Hydraulics of Flow and Sediment Tansport in the Kankakee River in Illinois

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The hydraulics of flow and sediment transport in the Kankakee River in Illinois were investigated in a 2-year study. A historical review of the Kankakee River Basin over the last few hundred years showed the progression of river channelization in Indiana about 65 years ago and the behavior of the river in the straightened portion in Indiana and the non straightened portion in Illinois. An analysis of this historical data related to peak flows, average flows, and low flows for sic gaging stations showed a trend of increasing average flows at Momence and Wilmington. Flow data from other sections did not show any trends. A comparison of the cross-sectional data between 1965 and 1978 for the main stream of the river in Illinois showed both deposition and scour at various places. An analysis of more than 300 bed material samples indicated that the median diameters of the bed materials of the river range in size from 0.2 to 0.4 mm.

Extensive susoended sediment, bed load, and water discharge data were collected and analyzed. Regression equations between water discharge and sediment discharge for all the stations have been developed. The river carries silt and clay during low flow periods, and sand and small quantities of silt and clay during high flow periods. During storm events, for a period of about 60 to 80 days the river carries almost 70 to 80 percent of the yearly sediment load at all the gaging stations. It is estimated that the river carried about 131,000 tons of sediment load at Wilmington in water year 1979. In relative terms, the Iroquois River watershed contributed more suspended sediment load per square mile of drainage area than the main stem of the Kankakee River. Bed load data collected t a few locations ranged from 1 to 2 percent of the total yearly suspended load at those sites.

A number of active sand bars have been surveyed and at one sand bar near the state line appears to be forming and crossing the state line was about 9 to 14 percent of the total load at this location. A hydrographic map of the Six Mine Poo has been developed. A number of preventative and remedial measures to reduce the sediment load have been identified and outlines in the report.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.