Infill Mobility through Engineered Synthetic Turf on Steep Slopes

Hassan Ismail, Ming Xiao, Sajjad Salam, Bryan Scholl, Xiaofeng Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Understanding the complex flow and sediment transport on vegetated slopes is important for ecological restoration and conservation projects. This study quantifies the erodibility of sand infill through densely vegetated engineered turf on steep slopes. Flume testing was conducted on four different sand infill materials. The initially lain bed material had artificially high mobility due to the infill application method. Grains were elevated by the vegetation and protruded into the flow. Then, the bed material gradation during subsequent flows became progressively coarser. Two regimes were identified. Poorly sorted infill soils underwent noticeable changes to gradation and had decreasing mobility with increasing shear stress. Conversely, well-sorted soils had minimal changes to gradation and resulted in the expected trend of increasing sediment flux with increasing shear stress. Existing predictive formulas performed poorly, in particular for the soils with evolving gradation. An updated formulation to predict sediment flux is proposed based on a reduction to the effective bed shear stress and dimensionless parameters relating to the flow, sediment, and vegetation characteristics. The proposed modification results in greatly improved predictions for both sediment flux magnitude and trend.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number04021023
JournalJournal of Hydraulic Engineering
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Mechanical Engineering


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