The Fluid & Sediment Dynamics research group conducts studies in the area of environmental hydraulics and sediment transport. It is led by Dr. Kyle Strom and is part of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Virginia Tech.

Research Theme

We study the movement of water, sediment, and other substances in a range of aquatic environments (e.g., rivers, lakes, estuaries, and the ocean). A broad topic of interest for us within this theme is how the interaction between the flow and sediment forms and sculpts our waterways and landscapes. We study such processes at small spatial and temporal scales where turbulent motion and the interaction of individual sediment particles in the bed or water column influence the dynamics at play. We also study these processes at larger scales where drivers such as climate, manmade alterations to rivers, or the installation of infrastructure influence rivers and deltas over time scales of years to centuries. In all of our work, we are interested in understanding basic processes, developing new experimental methods, and creating quantitative tools for forward and backward modeling. Improving our understanding and ability to model natural systems aids responsible management of river and coastal resources, and helps to give a more accurate understanding of earth’s history and its future trajectory.

News

Tom Ashley wins Krone Award

Tom Ashley wins Krone Award

kstrmOctober 11, 20211 min read

Congratulations to Tom on winning the Ray Krone Award at the 2021 International Conference on Cohesive Sediment Transport! The Krone award is given in honor of one of the founders of modern cohesive sediment science and engineering, Ray Krone, for…

New group members

New group members

kstrmOctober 9, 20211 min read

Two new people joined the group this fall. Kristin Chilton joined as an NSF Postdoctoral Fellow who will be looking at how the orientation of fracture planes in bedrock channels influences plucking, and ultimately, bedrock erosion rates. Kristin did her…

New collaborative NSF project examining the physical conditions in Bluehead Chub fish nests

New collaborative NSF project examining the physical conditions in Bluehead Chub fish nests

kstrmOctober 8, 20211 min read

We are excited to be a part of the research team studying controls on the physical conditions within mounded nests built by the Bluehead Chub. The effort is led by Emmanuel Frimpong from the Virginia Tech College of Natural Resources…

How is silt size in a deposit related to current velocity and other flow and sediment characteristics?

How is silt size in a deposit related to current velocity and other flow and sediment characteristics?

kstrmOctober 8, 20213 min read

This is a question we tackled experimentally with Brian Romans and Andrew Parent for systems dominated by advective dispersal of sediment. Results of the study are presented in Culp et al. (2021). The figure below summarizes some of the main…

How does time spent on the bed impact the properties of flocs?

How does time spent on the bed impact the properties of flocs?

kstrmNovember 20, 20193 min read

This is a question Duc Tran tackled in a recent paper (Tran and Strom 2019). Overview: Cohesive mud flocs in coastal waterways can go through repeated cycles of deposition and erosion before being sequestered in a final deposit. Unlike sand…

Student Research Opportunities

We are always looking for undergraduate and graduate students who are interested in environmental hydraulics and sediment transport. Please click here to find out more about opportunities that are currently available.

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