The USGS uses fixed hydroacoustic current meters in various deployment configurations (side-looking, upward and downward-looking) for many different applications. Perhaps the most common application is at streamflow-gaging stations to compute streamflow using index-velocity methods. The water velocity measured by a hydroacoustic current meter in a portion of a river can be used as a surrogate or "index" for the mean-channel velocity. Mean-channel velocities computed using index-velocity methods can be used to generate records of river streamflow. Upward and/or downward-looking fixed deployments have been used to measure tidal current patterns in bays, estuaries and harbors as well as wind-driven and density currents in lakes.
Instrument Page: Descriptions of the types of hydroacoustic current meters commonly used for index velocity applications.
Guidance: Published guidance reports, technical memorandums, and recommended procedures.
Downloads: Downloads or links of software and firmware for commonly used acoustic Doppler velocity meters and acoustic profilers (access may be restricted to USGS and several other Government agencies); download AreaComp, a USGS program created for the development of stage-area ratings.
Deployments: A summary of mounts and deployments for side-looking and upward-looking applications.
Tech Tips: Quick reference sheets and other tips for deploying index velocity meters and computing discharge using the index velocity method.
References: Reports, including reports available online, with information about index-velocity applications.
Class outlines and schedules for USGS hydroacoustic classes, including Streamflow
Records Computation using Hydroacoustic Current Meters and
Index-velocity Methods. This class includes site reconnaissance
and selection; hydroacoustic current meter types, uses, and programming;
index-velocity rating development, and data quality assurance/quality
are also available.
Links: Useful links associated with index velocity and fixed deployment of ADCPs