Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Civil Engineering

Committee Chair/Advisor

Nigel Kaye

Committee Member

Abdul Khan

Committee Member

Ashok Mishra


In this thesis, the stochastic nature of 3-dimensional compact windborne debris flight is investigated experimentally and computationally. Previous literature (Holmes, 2004) analyzed the impact of strong winds on compact debris with applications to windborne debris flight. Baker (2007) derived the 2-dimensional equations of motion into a generalized dimensionless form that reveals the fundamental controlling parameters of compact debris flight. However, these models assume that compact debris is spherical, and the flight is, therefore, 2-dimensional. However most compact debris is not spherical, and its flight is 3-dimensional. Herein a previously developed model for free-falling compact windborne debris flight (Ahsanulllah et al., 2021) is extended to include the effect of ambient wind. The model results are compared to a series of wind tunnel experiments in which a range of gravel gradations were released into an ambient wind field. In this thesis, it can be seen that as the gradation size increases with a constant wind speed, the streamwise flight distance decreases and as the wind speed increases for a constant gradation size, the streamwise flight distance increases as expected. The transverse ranges for the landing locations for the gravel particles were much smaller than the streamwise spread. The mean transverse landing locations were very small compared to the mean streamwise landing location showing little bias in the flow. The stochastic model tends to slightly underpredict the streamwise landing locations of the gravel particles, more particularly as the size increases. It also underpredicts the transverse spread. Reasons for these differences are discussed.



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