ASTM D5243 - 92(2013)

    Standard Test Method for Open-Channel Flow Measurement of Water Indirectly at Culverts

    Active Standard ASTM D5243 | Developed by Subcommittee: D19.07

    Book of Standards Volume: 11.01


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    ASTM D5243

    Significance and Use

    5.1 This test method is particularly useful to determine the discharge when it cannot be measured directly with some type of current meter to obtain velocities and sounding equipment to determine the cross section. See Practice D3858.

    5.2 Even under the best of conditions, the personnel available cannot cover all points of interest during a major flood. The engineer or technician cannot always obtain reliable results by direct methods if the stage is rising or falling very rapidly, if flowing ice or debris interferes with depth or velocity measurements, or if the cross section of an alluvial channel is scouring or filling significantly.

    5.3 Under flood conditions, access roads may be blocked, cableways and bridges may be washed out, and knowledge of the flood frequently comes too late. Therefore, some type of indirect measurement is necessary. The use of culverts to determine discharges is a commonly used practice.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method covers the computation of discharge (the volume rate of flow) of water in open channels or streams using culverts as metering devices. In general, this test method does not apply to culverts with drop inlets, and applies only to a limited degree to culverts with tapered inlets. Information related to this test method can be found in ISO 748 and ISO 1070.

    1.2 This test method produces the discharge for a flood event if high-water marks are used. However, a complete stage-discharge relation may be obtained, either manually or by using a computer program, for a gauge located at the approach section to a culvert.

    1.3 The values stated in inch-pound units are to be regarded as the standard. The SI units given in parentheses are for information only.

    1.4 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    D1129 Terminology Relating to Water

    D2777 Practice for Determination of Precision and Bias of Applicable Test Methods of Committee D19 on Water

    D3858 Test Method for Open-Channel Flow Measurement of Water by Velocity-Area Method

    ISO Standards

    ISO1070 Liquid Flow Measurements in Open Channels-Slope-Area Methods


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 17.120.20 (Flow in open channels)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    DOI: 10.1520/D5243-92R13

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