International Researcher Mobility Scheme with Stellenbosch University

  • Wain, Danielle, (PI)
  • Kamish, Wageed (CoI)

Project: Research-related funding


During the summer months, the increased solar radiation causes lakes and reservoirs to become stratified by temperature, with warmer water near the surface and colder water near the bottom. This stratification suppresses vertical mixing of dissolved substances such as oxygen, nutrients, or pollutants. This can lead to adverse water quality affects such as anoxic bottom waters that result in fish kills, trapping of nutrient-laden waters in the photic zone creating ideal conditions for algal blooms, and reduced dilution of wastewaters and nonpoint source pollution. Processes that generate turbulence below the water surface increase the mixing of the stratified waters. One of the primary sources of turbulence below the surface is internal waves, which are generated when wind acts on the lake surface

In this project, Wageed Kamish, a lake modeller focusing on algal blooms from Stellenbosch University, and I will use an existing lake dataset from my dissertation to accomplish two objectives:

(1) Evaluate the capacity of CE-QUAL-2E, a lake model from the US Army Corps of Engineers, to accurately simulate internal wave driven hydrodynamics in lakes by comparison with the extensive existing dataset.
(2) Determine the lake’s internal wave response to varying wind direction and speed by combining model output and measurements.

The results of this pilot project will be used to write a fuller proposal combining new lake measurements and lake modelling. There are no academic scientists in South Africa who conduct field measurements in lakes (my specialty), thus there are plentiful opportunities for future observational work to complement Mr. Kamish’s modelling efforts on algal blooms in reservoirs. One near-future area would be on holistic approaches to algal management that allows extraction of the algae for biofuels, in conjunction with Dr. Tom Arnott in Chemical Engineering and other researchers at Stellenbosch. This pilot project will help ensure that the model can accurately represent the hydrodynamics of lake and reservoirs.
Short title5000
Effective start/end date1/11/1331/10/14