Principles of hydraulics and hydrology

A.Y. 2020/2021
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The course aims to provide the basic knowledges in hydraulic and hydrology in order to cope with problems concerning the monitoring, the use and the management of water resources in agro-forestry systems. Moreover, the course aims to provide basic knowledges suitable for dealing with problems of design and verification of irrigation systems and hydraulic infrastructures aimed to the control of irrigation, the harvesting of rainfalls, the managing of surface runoff and the hydraulic protection of the territory.
Expected learning outcomes
The students will obtain solid basis of knowledge and qualifications for the investigation of hydraulic and hydrological problems in agro-forestry systems. Moreover, they will obtain basic skills on the use of monitoring techniques and modelling instruments which allow to describe the dynamics of hydrological processes in soil-vegetation-atmosphere systems. The students will obtain the basic knowledges useful to deal with and solve fluid flow problems in pipelines and open channels, applying these concepts in the design and verification of simple hydraulic infrastructures and irrigation systems. The students will obtain also technical knowledges on the dynamics of rainfall-runoff processes as well as the basis for design rainfall drainage and harvesting systems.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First semester
Dear students, the changes in the modality of teaching for the academic year 2020/21 due to the health emergency are:
Teaching methods:
The lessons will be performed on the Microsoft Teams platform and they can be followed in sync on the basis of the first-semester timetable. There will be a face-to-face lesson on October 28, 2020. The lessons will be recorded and uploaded to Ariel. Further details can be found on UD's Ariel website.
The teaching will be carried out entirely online in asynchronous mode i.e. with the possibility of using the lessons on-demand. However, face-to-face meetings will be organized (communicated through the Ariel website) for clarify topics of the course and for further information.
Course syllabus
eaching unit #1: Hydraulics
24 hours of theory lessons:
- Main physical characteristics of the water. Fundamentals of hydraulics and their units.
- Elements of hydrostatics. Instruments for measuring pressure. General information on water flow.
- Elements of hydrodynamics. Bernoulli's theorem. Equation of uniform water flow. Uniform flow of water in pipes under pressure. Conducted with pumps. Long pipelines. Free-surface flow. Design criteria and testing. Structures for water regulation in channels.
16 hours will be dedicated to computer classroom training:
- Design, hydraulic calculations and technical report of a microirrigation plant and an irrigation system for residential green.
Teaching Unit #2: Hydrology
the study of the hydrological cycle and the basis of hydrological processes such as precipitation, rainfall interception, evapotranspiration, infiltration and percolation;
methods of physical and mechanical analysis of soils as well as the study of their hydrological properties;
analysis of water filter mechanisms in saturated and unsaturated soils;
measurement of hydrological variables;
calculation of the water and irrigation needs of crops and the planning of irrigation frequency and rate;
estimation of the hydrological balance at a field scale;
the study of some statistical and probability concepts related to the analysis of extreme hydrological events and hydrological measures;
the study of intensity frequency duration curves;
the assessment of project precipitation;
the calculation of hydrological losses using Horton models and those based on the Curve Number definitions;
evaluation of the critical rainfall duration;
the analysis of runoff processes;
the evaluation peak of discharge and design through rational method, the lag-time and statistical analysis of observed flows.
The hydrology module provides also 16 hours of computer classroom training, as follows:
8 hours dedicated to the calculation of the water needs of crops according with FAO-56 method, assessing irrigation supplies of fields in a district with different crops and soils.
8 hours dedicated to assessing design flood of a natural basin under different rainfall return time land use changes.
Prerequisites for admission
The students must have deep knowledges in math and physics, and a very good level of skills in the use of PC Office applications.
Teaching methods
During the computer classroom training hours Excel, Matlab and QGis software will be used. The CAD Platform will be utilized to draw the irrigation project.
Teaching Resources
· Lecture note available in line (
· Gallati M. e Sibilla S., Fondamenti di idraulica, Carocci editore, 2009, pp. 277, ISBN 9788843051717
· MIPAAF - Paolo Sequi/Marcello Pagliai. Metodi di analisi fisica dei suoli. FrancoAngeli
· Ferro V. (2006). Elementi di idraulica e idrologia per le scienze agrarie ed ambientali. Mc Graw Hill
· Moisello U. (1998). Idrologia tecnica. La Goliardica Pavese.
· Maione U. - Moisello U. (1993). Elementi di statistica per l'idrologia. La Goliardica Pavese.
Assessment methods and Criteria
Teaching unit #1: Hydraulics
the exam consists of a written test composed by 2/3 exercises. A positive result in the written test gives access to the oral exam that concerns a discussion of the irrigation project.
The written test can be replaced by an intermediate test during the lessons, having the same characteristics.
The evaluation criteria will concern the ability to solve a practical problem related to the irrigation project, adopting the appropriate tools learned during the course.
Evaluation expressed in thirtieths
Teaching unit #2: Hydrology
The exam will consist of a writing multiple-choice test and a subsequent in-depth interview. The interview will mainly focus on the discussion of a technical report prepared by the student and concerning the topics addressed during the computer classroom training hours.
Computer room practicals: 16 hours
Lessons: 24 hours
Computer room practicals: 16 hours
Lessons: 40 hours
Professor: Masseroni Daniele