Hydraulic flume

The Emflume1 is a turnkey desktop open channel flume for demonstrating fluid mechanics, river habitat hydraulics, and sediment transport. Its portability makes it easy to use in a lab or classroom setting.

Emflume1 specifications

Working Section 55.8 cm x 9.4 cm x 15.2 cm (22 in x 3.7 in x 6 in);

Model footprint on table 1.02 m x 0.25 m (40 in x 10 in)

Portability Small and portable, fits on a desktop, 65 lb (29 kg) dry weight.
Water 23 L (6 gal)
Media Amount 6.8 kg (15 lb)
Media Type Color-coded
Other Features Efficient and quiet ducted-propeller.
System Also Includes Electronic flow controller for variable flow rates. Tilt system allows +/- 2.5 degrees of vertical tilt. Closed-cell foam hydraulic shapes, pitot tube. User and laboratory manual.

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See the Applications for Science and Teaching pages for more examples of how to use the Emflume1.

The Emriver Emflume1 is the world’s only portable, turnkey hydraulic flume system. With a footprint of only 40 inches by 10 inches, it fits comfortably in most labs and classrooms and can be easily transported on a small cart. The 6-gallon water capacity means the flume is quickly filled and drained with a bucket or small hose at a sink. Despite its compact size, the Emflume1 has a working section of 22 by 3.7 by 6 inches, so there’s ample room for demonstration and study of open channel phenomenon and the use of structures and sediment. The powerful 24V pump is operated by a custom digital controller, and flow is modified by large inlet and exit valves. A wide selection of weirs and inserts, plus a pitot tube and 15 lbs of color-coded media are included with the flume. The flume is used by high schools with physics and engineering classes, and by colleges and universities teaching hydraulics or civil and mechanical engineering that need to be efficient with their lab space.

The Emflume1 has applications in hydraulics, hydrology, and riverbed morphology. Demonstrations of open channel flow include normal and critical depth determination, rating curve, specific energy, hydraulic jump, and sluice gate pressure distribution. Discharge can be measured when the supplied weirs are used in the channel, such as suppressed rectangular, contracted rectangular, triangular, broad crested, and ogee crested. The combination of standard weir shapes and our color-coded media in the eflume is truly eye-opening. Pipe flow experiments can be conducted using Reynolds number, and shear stress and bed formations can be studied using our plastic modeling media. 

The Emflume1 is also an excellent adjunct to our Emriver stream tables for teaching riverbed morphology, sediment transport, and deposition, especially as they relate to anthropogenic intrusions such as weirs and culverts. Students can explore the effect of channel modifications to the river system in the stream table, then zoom in for the macro view within the stream in the Emflume1.

The Emflume1 has been a great addition to our Earth and Atmospheric Sciences department’s teaching. It offers an easy-to-use interface for students to study fluid mechanics and is great for showing dynamics of sediment transport. When combined with our Em2 model’s table-top view, these models allow me to show students how sediment transport dynamics affect our environment so that they will be prepared to make informed decisions about river, floodplain, and coastal management as they go forward in their careers.

Douglas Edmonds

Associate Professor, Indiana University

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