Reservoir Model Background
Cherry Creek Reservoir is a flood control reservoir that has had periodic blue-green algae blooms and high chlorophyll α concentrations.
To increase oxygen at the bottom of the Reservoir and reduce the amount of internal nutrient loading, a destratification system was installed in the Reservoir in 2008. The system was also intended to help control cyanobacteria in the Reservoir by disrupting their buoyancy. However the destratification system has not achieved these goals. Additionally, there has not been enough evidence to show how the destratification system may influence cyanobacteria blooms.
Due to continued water quality concerns, a water quality model of the Reservoir was developed to:
- Better understand the causes of chlorophyll α standard exceedances and cyanobacteria blooms;
- Determine the impacts of the destratification system;
- Provide a tool to help predict the effects of future management strategies.
CCBWQA chose a two-dimensional hydrodynamic and water quality model of the Cherry Creek Reservoir that simulated in-reservoir water quality for 2003-2013. In 2019, the Reservoir Model was updated with data through 2017. To investigate the findings of Model 2 (Increased Destratification System Mixing) a Bubble Plume Model was coupled with the Reservoir model to mechanistically simulate the effects of the destratification system on mixing in Cherry Creek Reservoir. In addition, a Destratification System Study was initiated and will be completed in 2020.