Facilities & Equipment

The AU-ESCTF main testing facilities currently consist of three, 40 ft test channels; a 200 ft long test earthen channel, a 2,400 cf sediment basin; and fourteen, 8 ft by 8 ft individual product longevity erosion control blanket plots.  With these current facilities, the AU-ESCTF has the ability to perform the following services:
  1. Performance testing and evaluation of ditch check devices, practices, and systems,
  2. Performance testing and evaluation of inlet protection practices (IPPs),
  3. Longevity testing of erosion control products to include, rolled erosion control products (RECPs), turf reinforcement mats (TRMs), and hydraulic mulches.
  4. Evaluation of sediment basin performance using enhanced settling techniques, and
  5. Erosion and sediment control training for industry professionals (i.e., designers, contractors, inspectors, and regulators)
The facility has the capabilities of: (1) testing erosion control practices (e.g., straw mulch, hydromulch, polyacrylamide, soft armoring, etc.) at an intermediate-scale using simulated rainfall, and (2) testing erosion and sediment control practices (e.g., ditch checks and inlet protection) at a large-scale using simulated channelized flow.  The three large-scale test channels are comprised of two identical channels designated for evaluating the performance of various ditch check practices (i.e., rock, hay bales, wattles, silt dikes, etc.) and one channel is used to evaluate inlet protection practices.  Each channel is comprised of 30- ft galvanized steel section and a 15-ft earthen section where each ditch check or inlet protection device is installed and evaluated.  All test waters from the experimental channels are captured in a sediment basin before being discharged into the lower retention pond.

Testing Apparatuses

Three test channels with the ability to test erosion and sediment controls in channelized conditions were designed as the central feature of the facility and the overall purpose of the design.  Two identical channels dedicated to channelized erosion and sediment control performance and one channel dedicated to drop inlet protection devices were designed.  Each channel has been designed to mimic roadside drainage ditch characteristics on typical ALDOT highway construction sites.  ASTM D 7208-06 was referenced for the channel designs, however, designs were adjusted to address regional design practices versus the ASTM standard test methodology design.  No ASTM standard is available for performance testing of drop inlet protection; therefore the drop inlet was designed to similar features of a 1 acre highway median drainage basin

Water Source

A 210,000 gallon storage pond located down grade from a 7.33 acre parking lot is used to collect and store runoff emanating from the parking lot for experimental use.  A sediment pond is located downgrade of the experimental channels where all test flows are collected to aid in the removal of sediment.  The third pond is a 335,000 gallon retention pond located at the lowest elevation of the facility. The retention pond may be used when needed to replenish the water supply in the storage pond between rain events by pumping water back upgrade to the storage pond

Last Updated: 5/21/15 3:36 PM