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Ecology

Chandler Canal Study

Location: Chandler Canal, Prosser, Washington

Battelle performed a thorough evaluation of the Chandler canal fish screen facility to determine if it could be operated during drought conditions (2001) without violating fish protection criteria guidelines. The low water/drought conditions in 2001 made it necessary for the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) to operate the Chandler Canal fish screen facility at flows that were lower than the facility was designed to accommodate.

Battelle used acoustic Doppler velocimeter equipment to collect velocity data under a range of operational conditions to determine if the facility could be operated in a manner that would be within the fish protection criteria developed by the NMFS. In addition, Battelle deployed sensor fish devices through the bypass systems at the facility to determine whether conditions that existed during low water operations that might be expected to injure or kill passing smolts.

Finally, Battelle developed a hydraulic model of the Chandler Canal fish screen facility that was used to predict what the general flow patterns might be under the configurations that were suggested as possibilities for low water operations. This project was very successful in terms of providing the USBR with important data that will enable them to operate this facility in future low water years with minimal impacts to passing salmonids.

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