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CALCULATE THE
SPEED OF MOVING SURFACE WATER
We're going to learn to calculate the speed at which surface water flows. There are several different ways to make this determination: a. Float
an object, such as a cork or small, thin piece of wood, onto some moving
water (e.g., a stream or gutter flow), and measure the distance the object
travels in 1 We can convert
the rate from feet per minute to miles per hour, using simple mathematics:
Eightyeight feet X 60 minutes (the number of minutes in an hour) = 5280
feet b. Mark a
100 foot distance along a straightflowing portion of a stream. Float
an object between the marks, and record the time. If the object travels
100 feet in 25 seconds, then dividing by 25 gives 4 feet traveled in 1
second. The speed per hour can also be calculated: 3600 seconds (the number
of seconds in one hour) X 4 feet This activity
does not address the fact that surface water often travels at a different
rate of speed, and often in slightly different directions than deeper
water. Also, it is Why do you think it is that we need to know the speed of moving water, anyway? Any problems with this page? Send URL to
webmaster. Thank you!
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