Lehigh River Water Quality Model


The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Philadelphia District requested the assistance the U.S. Army Engineering Research and Development Center to develop a numerical model of the Lehigh River system including F. E. Walter Reservoir, Beltzville Reservoir, approximately 45 miles of the Lehigh River below F. E. Walter Reservoir, and approximately 4.5 miles below Beltzville Reservoir to the confluence of the Lehigh River. F. E. Walter Dam is located five miles upstream of White Haven, Pennsylvania, on the Lehigh River. 

During the first phase of the study, teams calibrated for temperature, flow, and stage for the Leigh River study area. The model was calibrated and verified on two very different water years. Teams then simulated six different scenarios to evaluate effects on water quality.   

The second phase of the study focused on adding water quality and metal constituents to the models already set up during the first phase for temperature and flow. Six new proposed operational scenarios jointly developed and agreed to by USACE, Pennslyvania DCNR, and Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC), at F.E. Walter Dam were modeled to enhance downstream and in-lake recreation and habitat. Scenario runs were conducted using initial and boundary conditions from calibration and verification runs with the new F. E. Walter reservoir releases. 

Reports & Findings

Model: Temperature

Model: Oxygen


USACE Philadelphia District
Planning Division
100 Penn Square E.
Philadelphia, PA 19107