Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Civil and Environmental Engineering

Committee Chair(s)

Blake P. Tullis


Blake P. Tullis


William J. Rahmeyer


Joseph A. Caliendo


Traditional culvert designs, in many cases, have become habitat barriers to aquatic animal species. In response, environmentally sensitive culvert designs have been developed to function as ecological bridges. Bottomless and buried invert culverts are examples of such designs and are commonly used for fish passage. Additional design guidance specific to streambed stability in buried-invert or bottomless culverts under high flow events is needed. This study investigated incipient motion conditions for four substrate materials in a 2-ft (0.61-m) diameter circular bottomless arch culvert and in a 1-ft (0.30-m) wide rectangular flume in a laboratory setting. General scour of the streambed within the bottomless arch culvert was also investigated under partially pressurized and non-pressurized flow conditions. This thesis discusses the experimental methods used to determine incipient motion conditions and analyses of incipient motion prediction methods. This thesis also presents the experimental results obtained from both test facilities with the results of other published incipient motion studies on gravel streambeds. Finally, the prediction efficiency of eight stone sizing methods (open channel and culvert application) applied to the experimental results was analyzed, which may be useful for determining stable stone diameters to be used as riprap in simulated streambeds through bottomless culverts.