Prof. Dr. Mário Franca


Karlsruhe Institute for Technology (KIT)
Institute for Water and Environment
- Hydraulic Engineering and Water Resources Management -
Kaiserstrasse 12
76131 Karlsruhe

Phone: +49 (0)721 - 608-44418
Email: wasserbau∂iwu.kit.edu

Visiting address:

Engesserstrasse 22, Building 10.83
76131 Karlsruhe

The challenges facing water managers and engineers nowadays are manifold, complex, and require cross disciplinary approaches. These challenges include the safety of hydraulic natural and built systems, ageing infrastructures, pollution, guarantee of energy and food security, sustainable development and safety of urban environment, ecological feedbacks and an uncertain future.

Our group develops research towards engineering solutions for the design, the planning and the implementation of sustainable water infrastructures prepared for global change. We investigate the mechanics of flowing water and its interaction with key elements of a river basin such as sediments, dissolved matter, gases, living organisms and people. More specifically, the group is committed to develop research on four main topics: sustainable and secure water for supply, food and energy; adaptive and multi-functional hydraulic systems; healthy rivers; and geophysical processes in rivers and lakes.

Scaling-up computational hydrodynamics with HPC and SERGHEI
Scaling-up computational hydrodynamics with HPC and SERGHEI

Physically-based hydrological models can be understood as an upscaling exercise of hydrodynamic numerical models.

The latter have experienced great development in the past two decades, which together with the accelerated growth of computational power, now enable to tackle catchment and even regional scale hydrological modelling based on such tools.

Link to the seminar PDF file
IWU visit at University of Waterloo
IWU visit at University of Waterloo

Last week, a delegation of IWU composed by Mário Franca, Olivier Eiff, Davide Vanzo and Christof Gromke, visited the University of Waterloo to foster for future collaborations in the water sector.

The visit included joint meetings, field visits, a Water Talk given by Mário Franca at the Water Institute and the participation in the Graduate Research on Water Technology and Hydraulics (GROWTH) Symposium where graduate students presented and discussed their work.

The Water Talk by Mário Franca by can be found here.

Dissertation of Christin Kannen
Thesis of Christin Kannen

Christin Kannen defended her doctoral thesis last Friday, April 19, 2024. After years of excellent scientific work, she was awarded her doctorate for her thesis on “Hydromorphology of ecological deep pool habitats”.

Christin's work has made an important contribution to the state of the art in the field of ecohydraulics.

Congratulations to Dr.-Ing. Christin Kannen! We are already looking forward to the next big project she will be embarking on.

Third international Conference on Monitoring for Enhanced Hydropower Lifetime
Third international Conference on Monitoring for Enhanced Hydropower Lifetime

The conference focused on recent cutting edge geoscientific and technical works undertaken in the western Caucasus within the DAMAST and DAMAST-Transfer projects (2019-2024) funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research BMBF.

The DAMAST researchers from TSU, GTU, EIFER, Piewak & Partner, GHHD, GEORISK and KIT have been working on topics such as induced seismicity and reactivation of existing faults under the current stress field, risk mitigation, petrophysical analysis of rocks, sediment formation and transport in the reservoir and the regional deformation as well as the deformation of the Enguri High Arch dam as a response to variable water levels in the reservoir.

The IWU was represented by Stephan Hilgert and Andreas Kron.  Following the conference, in which representatives of various ministries from Georgia, the German embassy in Georgia and the BMBF took part, the participants were able to take a two-day field trip to see the Enguri high dam and the project area with the measuring installations.

Presentation MSCA RESCUER Project

On 26 March 2024, Mário Franca was invited to give a presentation in the Kick-off meeting of the MSCA RESCUER project to which the IWU is an Associated Partner.

He presented the main results of two recent publications on Urban Flood Drifters, an essential element to be considered in flood management. More details can be found on the here and here.

Link to the presentation page
10. Gewässerdialog - Aktuelle Fragestellungen bei Stauanlagen 21.03.2024
10th Water Dialogue - Current issues regarding dams on 21.03.2024

This specialist event organized by the Water Management Association B.W. in cooperation with the KIT (Institute for Water and Environment; Institute for Soil and Rock Mechanics) was very well received.

Droughts and water shortages will also present us with major challenges here in Germany in the future. Weirs, dams and dykes play a decisive role in retaining and storing water ("sponge landscape").

Current regulations (e.g. DIN 19700, DWA-M 500) on the risk management of dam structures with regard to inspection and incidents as well as the consideration of operational aspects in the context of the in-depth inspection (VU) were discussed. A further contribution dealt with technical procedures for the maintenance of dams and dykes and highlighted their synergies with the need for maintenance for flood protection reasons and ecological concerns.