October 4, 2013

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Brandon Klenzendorf Co-Authors ASCE Journal of Hydrologic Engineering Article on Impact of Bridge Rails on Floodplain Analysis

AUSTIN, Texas — Geosyntec staff member Brandon Klenzendorf, PhD, CPESC, co-authored the article "Impact of Bridge Rail Geometry on Floodplain Analysis" published in the December 2010 issue of the ASCE Journal of Hydrologic Engineering. Brandon's co-authors were Michael Barrett, Research Associate Professor, and Randall Charbeneau, Professor of Civil Engineering, from the Center for Research in Water Resources at The University of Texas at Austin.

In the article, the authors investigated the hydraulic effects of various bridge rail geometries on a bridge structure in order to determine the potential impacts on the surrounding floodplain boundary. Typically the geometry of bridge rails is not considered when conducting floodplain analysis, and the use of successfully crash tested bridge rails with a large height or minimal open space may adversely impact the floodplain boundary. The authors previously published an article describing the development of a rating curve and submergence model to characterize bridge rail hydraulics. These models are now incorporated into floodplain mapping software, such as HEC-RAS, through an iterative approach in order to accurately describe the impact of various bridge rail geometries on the upstream floodplain. The method is outlined and a simple single bridge example is provided. This method is of particular interest when assessing the hydraulic impacts from the safety rehabilitation of bridges. For additional background information, see the previously published article in the February 2009 issue of the ASCE Journal of Hydraulic Engineering entitled "Bridge Rail Rating Curves and Submergence Characteristics" by Klenzendorf and Charbeneau.

Brandon earned his PhD in civil engineering with an emphasis in water resources and hydraulic engineering. In addition, he received his Master's degree in environmental and water resources engineering and Bachelor's in civil engineering with honors. Brandon received all his degrees from The University of Texas at Austin. This article was part of his research work while pursuing his graduate degree under the supervision of Prof. Charbeneau.