Solving the World’s Toughest CFD Problems

FLOW-3D HYDRO dams and spillways

Dams & Spillways

Hydroelectric power projects are sensitive to three-dimensional flow effects, and accurately predicting flow patterns is important for maximizing efficiency. FLOW-3D HYDRO is an industry leader in free-surface flow modeling and is used by dam professionals to address a wide range of design problems for existing and proposed projects. With state-of-art free surface flow modeling, exceptional accuracy and ease of use, and seamless integration of our solution into high performance computing platforms, dams and spillways are ideally suited for the natural modeling strengths of FLOW-3D HYDRO. From the simplest ogee to the most complex geometric configurations, every element of the dam and its surrounding infrastructure are ideal candidates for FLOW-3D HYDRO modeling. Common challenges that FLOW-3D HYDRO addresses include improving flow efficiency and distribution at intakes and spillways, performing complex environmental impact assessments of dams, and designing and optimizing fish passages.


With the increased availability of high performance computing platforms, large scale simulation of complex free surface flows can now include very high meshing density, which delivers for the user a very high accuracy representation of the flow. This labyrinth weir model includes the free surface flow, as well as an estimate of air entrainment.

Dams & Spillways Focused Applications

Spillway analysis

Intake hydraulics


Tailrace analysis

Hydraulic controls

Dam breach


Stilling basins

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