Instructor: Harlan Bengtson
Credit Hours: 4.00

Approval Number:

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Course Description

This course is intended for hydrologists, civil engineers, hydraulic engineers, highway engineers and environmental engineers. Someone completing this course will have knowledge about the basic nature of flow in open channels and the common ways of classifying open channel flow (laminar or turbulent, steady state or unsteady state, uniform or non-uniform, and critical, subcritical or supercritical). Practice in the use of the Manning equation for a variety of uniform open channel flow calculations will be gained through several worked examples.

Course Objectives

 Upon completion of this course, the participant will be able to:

• Differentiate between laminar & turbulent, steady state & unsteady state, and uniform & non-uniform open channel flow.
• Calculate the hydraulic radius for flow of a specified depth in an open channel with specified cross-sectional shape and size.
• Calculate the Reynolds Number for a specified open channel flow and determine whether the flow will be laminar or turbulent flow.
• Use tables such as the examples given in this course to determine a value for Manning roughness coefficient for flow in a manmade or natural open channel.
• Use the Manning Equation to calculate volumetric flow rate, average velocity, Manning roughness coefficient, or channel bottom slope, if given adequate information about a reach of open channel flow.
• Use the Manning Equation, with an iterative procedure, to calculate normal depth for specified volumetric flow rate, channel bottom slope, channel shape & size, and Manning roughness coefficient for a reach of open channel flow.
• Make Manning Equation calculations in either U.S. units or S.I. units.
• Calculate the Manning roughness coefficient for a natural channel based on descriptive information about the channel.
• Carry out a variety of calculations for full or partially full flow under gravity in a circular pipe.

Instructor Bio

Dr. Bengtson is a graduate of Iowa State University with B.S. and M.S. degrees and of the University of Colorado with a PhD. He is a licensed Professional Engineer in Missouri. He has spent 30 years in engineering education in teaching and administrative positions, including six years as Dean of Engineering at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. His areas of expertise are environmental engineering, hydrology and hydraulics, engineering science and renewable energy systems. He did consulting work while holding the academic positions. Prior to entering academia, Dr. Bengtson worked for Minnesota Mining & Manufacturing as a Product Development Engineer and for E. I. duPont deNemours as a Process Development Engineer. Dr. Bengtson has authored numerous publications, presentations and technical reports. He is currently active in providing continuing education opportunities for Professional Engineers and is the founder of and, sites with the objective of providing inexpensive, easy to use Excel spreadsheets for a variety of engineering calculations.

Other Approvals

Florida Board of Professional Engineers (FBPE): 0009596
National Professional Engineer board: Not Required