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Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

First Advisor

Todd P. Trooien


The use of level spreaders in vegetated areas can offset the tendency of water to concentrate while moving down a slope. This study was conducted to evaluate if the use of these spreaders is beneficial and to evaluate different types of spreader for effectiveness of spreading water under low flow conditions.
A laboratory model was constructed to test various configurations of level spreading devices. The effectiveness of each spreader was measured across a range of low flow rates. The collected data was statistically analyzed to determine the effect of the spreaders on the flow of water and visual observations were made to determine what properties of the spreaders most affected the spreading efficiency of the spreader types.
All of the spreader types tested showed an increase of water spreading efficiency when compared to a condition of having no spreader installed, the characteristics of the flow and spreaders that were identified as having the most significant effect on the water spreading were the levelness of the spreader and the surface tension effects of the water flow. The spreading effectiveness increased with higher flow rates.
The use of spreaders of any of the types tested to spread water proved beneficial, with a sharp-crested, v-notch weir and the use of rock as a spreaders performing the most efficiently in the tests.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Agricultural wastes -- Management
Feedlot runoff -- Management
Water -- Purification -- Filtration


Includes bibliographical references (63-66)



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


Copyright © 2009 Justin Bonnema. All rights reserved