Assessment of inlet efficiency through a 3D simulation: numerical and experimental comparison

Water Sci Technol. 2016 Oct;74(8):1926-1935. doi: 10.2166/wst.2016.326.


Inlet efficiency is a requirement for characterizing the flow transfers between surface and sewer flow during rain events. The dual drainage approach is based on the joint analysis of both upper and lower drainage levels, and the flow transfer is one of the relevant elements to define properly this joint behaviour. This paper presents the results of an experimental and numerical investigation about the inlet efficiency definition. A full scale (1:1) test platform located in the Technical University of Catalonia (UPC) reproduces both the runoff process in streets and the water entering the inlet. Data from tests performed on this platform allow the inlet efficiency to be estimated as a function of significant hydraulic and geometrical parameters. A reproduction of these tests through a numerical three-dimensional code (Flow-3D) has been carried out simulating this type of flow by solving the RANS equations. The aim of the work was to reproduce the hydraulic performance of a previously tested grated inlet under several flow and geometric conditions using Flow-3D as a virtual laboratory. This will allow inlet efficiencies to be obtained without previous experimental tests. Moreover, the 3D model allows a better understanding of the hydraulics of the flow interception and the flow patterns approaching the inlet.

MeSH terms

  • Hydrology
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Rain*
  • Spain
  • Water Movements*