Robinson Christopher Thomas

Sediment distribution and dynamics in River Spöl (SNP) bteween Lago die Livigno and Lai da Ova Spin

Project Number: CH-4937
Project Type: Mission/Management Oriented Project
Project Duration: 05/01/2013 - 12/31/2013 project completed
Funding Source: other ,
Project Leader: PD Dr. Christopher Thomas Robinson
Fliessgewässerökologie, Fliessgewässersysteme
Aquatische Ökologie (ECO)
Überlandstrasse 133
8600 Dübendorf
Phone: +41 (0) 58 765 53 17 ; +41 (0) 58 765 51 32
FAX: +41 (0) 58 765 53 15
e-Mail: christopher.robinson(at)

related to this project.
for which the project has a relevance.

Research Areas:

earth sciences
hydrology, limnology, glaciology

Leading questions:
Experimental floods have been used in the Spöl River between Livigno reservoir and Ova Spin reservoir beginning in 2000. At present, 2 experimental floods are allocated each year to mobilize bed sediments and reduce noxious algal blooms in the channel in order to maintain the rejuvenated trout fishery in the river. The positive results of this large-scale experiment have facilitated the flood program to be included in the regulatory framework of the dam at Livigno reservoir (and the program has acclaimed international status). The river has been monitored annually for changes in the fishery along with frequent sampling and monitoring of zoobenthos, algae, and water physical-chemistry. However, we have relatively little knowledge of the sediment relationships in the river and whether sediment inputs are adequate to fill the potential deficits caused by flooding. The stream section between the two reservoirs contains various tributaries and scree-slopes that add coarse sediments to the river, but little is known regarding the quantities being added and distribution of these sediments along the river. Knowledge regarding sediment dynamics in the river is highly important and rather urgent for assessing future trends in sediment in relation to the fishery and response of the river to experimental floods. The project has various goals. One goal is to map sediment distribution patterns in the river using flow, depth and sediment size measures at river transects between Livigno and Ova Spin. The section of river is around 6km long and at least ~60 transects will be measured along this reach at strategic locations (e.g. upstream and downstream of tributary and scree-slope inputs). These data also will be included in a GIS to provide initial information of sediment mobility areas in response to the experimental floods. A future effort will be to incorporate the data into a hydraulic model, e.g. Basement. Another goal is to compare Lidar flight data from different flights to estimate the potential input of sediment from various sources along the river. This last goal is ambitious and is dependent on the availability of quality flight data from the Lidar. If the data are excellent, areas along the river that contribute substantial amounts of sediment should be able to be detected and quantified.

Last update: 12/29/16
Source of data: ProClim- Research InfoSystem (1993-2020)
Update the data of project: CH-4937

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