Hydraulic structures engineering is one of the most important fields of civil and environmental engineering with challenges arising from new and complex environmental issues, refurbishment of aging infrastructure and increasing resilience to climate change. Such challenges will require the combined efforts of both researchers and practitioners in future years. The purpose of the Hydraulic Structures Committee is to champion the subject area of hydraulic structures in an era of increasing specialization in the hydraulic profession. There are important new developments in the planning, design, construction, and life cycle maintenance of hydraulic structures that are to be addressed by both researchers and practitioners. To help facilitate these efforts, the Hydraulic Structures Committee has the following objectives:
to champion the area of hydraulic structures in an era of increasing specialization;
to help with the adaptation of hydraulic structures to reduce footprint and impact and instead harmonise with the surrounding environment;
to bridge the gap between researchers and practitioners by engagement with government water agencies, participation in codes and standards committees and writing and promoting technical publications;
to identify knowledge gaps where hydraulic research can be applied;
to provide a solid knowledge and experience base for design of hydraulic structures;
to encourage continuing education in hydraulic structures through specialty conferences, short courses, and educational curriculum;
to gather competent data bases from the laboratory and field to encourage advancements in modelling, theory, observation, and technology;
to collaborate with other organizations in the advancement and understanding of hydraulic structures in the natural environment.
Sustainability framework for hydraulic structures engineering
University of California, Davis
United States of America
The University of Nottingham
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
VorTech Water Solutions and National University of Ireland, Galway
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
Daniel Bung (2017-2019)
Blake Tullis (2015-2017)
Robert Janssen (2013-2015)
Stefano Pagliara (2012-2013)
Group photo of the past chairs of the Committee on Hydraulic Structures at the 38th IAHR World Congress in Panama City, Panama, 2019
The flow fields in and around most hydraulic structures are complex, three-dimensional, highly turbulent and can cause phase changes resulting in air entrainment or sediment transport. To provide important design advancements, research of hydraulic structures engineering must therefore be addressed from various perspectives.
The multidisciplinary research activities of the hydraulic structures committee are guided by the sustainability of hydraulic structures engineering in the 21st century addressing important research questions in an era of rapid technological development, urgency in reducing the carbon footprint and maintaining a secure water infrastructure for humanity. In particular the Committee actively pursues research in the following areas:
Providing fundamental solutions for complex three-dimensional flow processes associated with hydraulic structures including multiphase flows and process-based approaches for turbulent flows.
Educating the next generation of hydraulic engineers and contributing to life-long learning within the hydraulic structures community.
Exploring the newest physical and numerical modelling tools to expand the fundamental and applied knowledge base for betterment of hydraulic structures design.
Conducting multidisciplinary research at the interface of hydraulics and (fish) biology and/or chemistry to provide guidelines for fish passes at hydraulic structures or for hydraulic structures in wastewater treatment plants.
Embracing technological advancement and employing and developing new instrumentation to provide unique insights into flows across hydraulic structures.
Continuing the tradition of sound physical modelling together with advanced numerical modelling tools to provide practical solutions to water infrastructure design, while embracing field and full-scale observations of hydraulic structures to bridge the validation gap.
Current Practices and Design Standards
Applying best standards for current practice and to enhance these standards for future challenges to provide practical solutions to a changing climate and associated impacts on hydraulic structures.
Regulations and Requirements
Improving current legislation to embrace the need for more sustainable and nature based hydraulic structure solutions for the benefits of future generations.
It is our desire to collaborate with other IAHR Committees as well as international associations such as the Environmental and Water Resources Institute (EWRI) of ASCE or the International Commission on Large Dams (ICOLD) to organize workshops and symposia as well as technical publications, thus improving the practice of hydraulic engineering as it relates to structures.
Given the 20th anniversary of the IAHR Hydraulic Structures Technical Committee in 2018, the Leadership Team decided to create the Philip H. Burgi Best Paper Award, named after the first chair of the Technical Committee Philip H. Burgi. This award aims at rewarding the best technical paper presented during the International Symposium on Hydraulic Structures.
The award has been delivered for the first time during the 7th International Hydraulic Structures Symposium in Aachen. The recipient receives a certificate and possibly a gift. Due to COVID-19 no award was presented in 2020.
8th International Symposium on Hydraulic Structures (ISHS2020), 12-15 May 2020, Santiago de Chile, South America. (Event cancelled due to COVID-19); Proceedings Open Access
6th International Symposium on Hydraulic Structures (ISHS2016), 27-30 June 2016, Portland, Oregon, USA. Proceedings Open Access
5th International Symposium on Hydraulic Structures (ISHS2014), 25-27 June 2014, Brisbane, Australia. Proceedings Open Access
4th International Symposium on Hydraulic Structures (ISHS2012), 9-11 February 2012, Porto, Portugal. Website
3rd International Symposium on Hydraulic Structures (ISHS2008), 20-23 October 2008, Nanjing, China.
2nd International Symposium on Hydraulic Structures (ISHS2006), 12-14 October 2006, Cuidad Guayana, Venezuela.
1st International Symposium on Hydraulic Structures (ISHS2004), 26-28 April 2004, Tehran, Iran.
Group photo in front of Eupen dam during field tour of ISHS2018
Bonneville Dam powerhouse during field tour of ISHS2016
Fish collection downstream of Hinze Dam during field tour of ISHS2014
7th International Junior Researcher and Engineer Workshop on Hydraulic Structures (IJREWHS2019), 25-27 June 2019, Denver, USA. Flyer
4th International Junior Researcher and Engineering Workshop on Hydraulic structures (IJREWHS2012) June 2012, Utah State University, Logan, USA. Proceedings Open Access
3rd International Junior Researcher and Engineering Workshop on Hydraulic structures (IJREWHS2010) 2010, Edinburgh, Scotland.
1st International Junior Researcher and Engineering Workshop on Hydraulic structures (IJREWHS2006) 2-4 September 2006, Montemor-o-Novo, Portugal. Proceedings Open Access
Online group photo at the IJREWHS2021 (National University of Ireland, Galway Virtual Event)
Group photo at IJREWHS2019 (Hydraulics Laboratory at U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Denver, USA)
Group photo at IJREWHS2016 (ship lift Scharnebek)
Group photo at IJREWHS 2012
Group photo at IJREWHS2010
Group photo at IJREWHS 2008
Group photo at IJREWHS 2006
International Workshop on Hydraulic Design of Low-Head Structures (IWLHS 2013) 20-22 February 2013, Aachen, Germany. Proceeding Open Access
International Workshop on Rock Scour due to falling high-velocity jets, 25-29 September 2002, Lausanne, Switzerland.
International Workshop on Hydraulics of Stepped Spillways, 22-24 March 2000, Zurich, Switzerland.
3rd International Workshop on Labyrinth and Piano Key Weirs, Qui Nhon, Vietnam, 22-24 February 2017, Proceedings
2nd International Workshop on Labyrinth and Piano Key Weirs, Chatou, Paris, France, 20-22 November 2013. Proceedings
1st International Workshop on Labyrinth and Piano Key Weirs, Liege, Belgium 9-11 February 2011. Proceedings
Hydraulic Structures (Roundtable) at 1st IAHR Online Forum. 1-9 July 2021. Website
Hydraulic Structures session at 1st IAHR Young Professionals Congress | Online. 17-18 November 2020. Website
Workshop on Design of Nonlinear Weirs during 2019 ICOLD annual meeting/symposium, 14 June 2019. Ottawa, Canada, Website
Workshop on Design of Nonlinear Weirs: 15 May 2018, Aachen, Germany. Website
Workshop on Stepped Spillways (H. Chanson), 27 June 2016, Portland/USA
Protections 2018: the 3rd International Conference on Protection against Overtopping, 6-8 June 2018, Grange-over-Sands, UK. Website
2nd International Seminar on Dam Protection Against Overtopping, Fort Collins Colorado, 7-9 September, 2016. Website
International Symposium on Hydraulic and Hydrological Aspects of Reliability and Safety Assessment of Hydraulic Structures, 29 May - 2 June 2002, St. Petersburg, Russia.
Special Seminar on Key Hydraulic Issues of Huge Water Projects, 17-18 September 2001, Beijing China.
Opinion paper by the Committee: Erpicum S., Crookston B.M., Bombardelli F., Bung D.B., Felder S., Mulligan S., Oertel M., Palermo M. (2021), 'Hydraulic structures engineering: An evolving science in a changing world', Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Water, 8. Website
Special collection in Journal of Hydraulic Engineering, ASCE (2020) on Advances in Hydraulic Structures Engineering. Website
Special collection in Journal of Hydraulic Engineering, ASCE (2020) on Teaching Hydraulic Engineering and Design. Website
Special issue in Journal of Hydro-environment Research (2019) “Flow Studies in Hydraulic Structures: Recent advances in experimental and numerical modelling", Website
Energy Dissipation in Hydraulic Structures. IAHR Monograph, 2015, Editor H. Chanson, CRC Press, Taylor & Francis Group, Leiden, The Netherlands, 168 pages.