Computer Graphics for Assessment of Eutrophication Venice Lagoon: A Case Study
The City of Venice has been experiencing increased frequency of flooding due to a decreasing differential between land and sea levels. It is estimated that flooding of the Piazza San Marco may occur as often as 40 times per year due to combinations of high tides and storm runoff unless communication of the Lagoon of Venice with the Adriatic Sea can be restricted at such times. A consortium of Italian engineering and construction organizations has proposed installation of hydraulically controlled barriers at the three entrances to the lagoon.
Closure of the proposed barriers for any extended period is regarded by some scientists and environmental groups as a threat to the ecology of the lagoon. It is anticipated that circulation within the shallower areas will be greatly reduced under the conditions of extended closure, thereby inducing excessive blooms of indigenous macro-algae that have already been the cause of severe water quality degradation.
Mathematical models for simulation of lagoon hydrodynamics and water quality have been applied to explore the consequences of the proposed barrier operation. Dynamic simulations of hydrodynamic effects and water quality changes induced by barrier operation have produced quantitative descriptions of as many as 15 state variables over real time periods of several months. Graphical presentation of simulation results is considered essential to the decision process. For this purpose an interactive color graphic system operating on a Macintosh II platform is being developed. In its present form the system displays post-processed model output in the form of animated color displays of state variables, e.g. temperature, dissolved oxygen, algae, salinity, nutrients, etc. as elected by the user. Alternative eutrophication control strategies and barrier operation scenarios are presented in animated graphic form for user evaluation.
The mathematical models, alternative management scenarios, and application of the graphics package are described. A demonstration disc is provided for user application on a Macintosh II computer.
KeywordsWater Quality Water Quality Variable Water Quality Model Computer Animation Venice Lagoon
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