Remote Real-time Riprap Protection Erosion AssessmenT on large rivers

R3PEAT is a Croatian Science Foundation Project funded under “Installation Research Projects” Programme (UIP-2019-04-4046)

Ongoing research

About the project

Motivation for the research

Large number of bridges in Europe are at the end of their life span, while the frequency of occurrence for extreme climatic events, driven by climate change, is increasing. Floods influence morphodynamic changes in the riverbed, such as scouring of the riverbed next to the bridge substructure, that can undermine the overall stability of the bridge.

The research focus of the project is investigation of scouring processes next to the riprap protection around bridge piers ‐ existing structures whose stability and safety are unknown in the hydraulic environment under the influence of climate change.

Ongoing scour related research was initiated by the collapse of Sava – Jakuševac  bridge in 2009 

Sava – Jakuševac bridge

Scour countermeasures

Placement of riprap protection around bridge piers is an approach that doesn’t solve scouring problem, it rather displaces the scour hole elsewhere in the river channel. 

Most frequent cause of degradation of riprap protection next to the bridge piers is undermining of its toe, which causes washing away of individual stones from riprap, in turn leading to displacement of the scour hole.

Several bridges have been selected for research around which riprap protection is in place to protect the pier from local scour.



Main objective

The main objective of the R3PEAT project is to bridge the gap between the real‐time scour hole development and flow environment through development of real‐time scour monitoring system.

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Research methodology combines experimental investigations on scaled physical model (Phase I) with 3D numerical model (Phase II) into hybrid modelling approach, calibrated and validated with field surveys.
Research Methodology

Research objectives of the project

  1. develop ScourBuoy prototype
  2. calibrate the physical model with field surveys
  3. improve existing empirical equations for equilibrium scour hole development using hybrid modelling approach
  4. investigate the dependence between turbulent flow characteristics and temporal scour hole development
  5. investigate dependence between turbulent conditions and incipient motion of sediment particles


Project partners are the Croatian Science foundation as funding organization, Faculty of Civil engineering as the leading institution and Faculty of Geodesy as partner institution under University of Zagreb

Objectives of the Croatian Science Foundation are to secure stable financing of competitive research and installation research projects in regular and predictable multi-annual cycles, contributing to uniform development of research in all areas of science.

is the oldest civil engineering faculty in Croatia. It continually develops and advances higher education, scientific research activities and overall education, and actively participates in the development of the profession and in implementation of new technologies.

is the only Croatian institution providing high education in Geomatics engineering and the largest faculty in this domain in Southeastern Europe.

is the largest Croatian university and the oldest continuously operating university in the area covering Central Europe south of Vienna and all of Southeastern Europe. The University is composed of 29 faculties, 3 art academies and 1 university center with more than 70000 students.

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