Comparison of pollution diffusion between river mouth inflow (RMI) and beach uniform inflow (BUI) in sudden water accident

Fanghui Pan, Youbao Wang*, Xinxi Zhang, Junsheng Huang, Yongbin Jiang, Xiaobing Hu, Sheng Li

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Recently high-frequency sudden pollution originated from an explosion of industrial plants, transportation accidents and oil spills was often continuously diffused into downstream water. In this paper, the features of pollution diffusion including the boundary shape, concentration gradients and covered area from the two typical sudden water accidents of river mouth inflow (RMI) and beach uniform inflow (BUI) were investigated and compared by utilizing computational fluid dynamic (CFD) model and lab-scale experiments. It was found that a circular boundary shape was formed when diffusion velocity was slower than threshold velocity of 0.0016 m/s, however, a long strip of boundary was replaced at the speed of more than 0.0016 m/s from RMI, using CFD simulation under lab-scale. The coincidence degree of diffusion over time in terms of covered area and boundary shape between CFD simulation and the lab-scale experiment was reached to 97.6–99.6% both in RMI and BUI. The result indicated that CFD was applied to simulate the pollution diffusion from the two patterns of sudden water accidents under full-scale. Results showed that a sharp peak was capable of appearing in mainstream and there was a ring current appearing in side wing from RMI. However, the mainstream with a gentle peak and the side wing with symmetrical diffusion were arising in BUI. In addition, a high concentration gradients and a clear concentration contours were both exhibited in RMI and BUI. The results may assist in offering emergency response to control sudden pollution diffusion, further supporting the scope of pollution hazard assessment and ecological remediation to recover pollution region.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)111-123
Number of pages13
JournalWater and Environment Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2019
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 CIWEM


  • CFD model
  • boundary shape
  • concentration gradients
  • emergency response
  • pollution diffusion
  • sudden pollution accidents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology
  • Pollution
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Environmental Engineering


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