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Open Channel Hydraulics I: The Manning Equation

Open Channel Hydraulics I: The Manning Equation

Note: This PDH course is a recorded video presentation.

Course Highlights

This online engineering PDH video presentation focuses on the basic nature of flow in open channels and common ways of classifying open channel flow (laminar or turbulent, steady state or unsteady state, uniform or non-uniform, and critical, subcritical or supercritical).  It presents several worked examples to gain practice in the use of the Manning equation for a variety of uniform open channel flow calculations.


Flow of water may take place either as open channel flow or pressure flow.  Pressure flow takes place in a closed conduit such as a pipe, and pressure is the primary driving force for the flow.  For open channel flow, on the other hand, the flowing liquid has a free surface that is at atmospheric pressure and the driving force is gravity.  Open channel flow takes place in natural channels like rivers and streams.  It also occurs in manmade channels such as those used to transport wastewater or irrigation water and in circular sewers flowing partially full.


This 3 PDH online video presentation is intended primarily for civil, hydraulic, highway, environmental, chemical, mechanical, and industrial engineers, who are interested in learning more about open channel hydraulics.

Learning Objectives

This PE continuing education video presentation is intended to provide you with the following specific knowledge and skills:

  • Understanding the difference between laminar and turbulent flow, steady state and unsteady state, as well as uniform and non-uniform open channel flow
  • Calculating the hydraulic radius for flow of specified depth in an open channel with specified cross-sectional shape and size
  • Calculating the Reynolds number for a specified open channel flow and determine whether the flow is laminar or turbulent flow
  • Determining a value for the Manning roughness coefficient for flow in manmade or natural channels using the example tables provided in this course
  • Using the Manning equation to calculate volumetric flow rate, average velocity, Manning roughness coefficient, or channel bottom slope, if given adequate information about a reach of an open channel
  • Using the Manning equation with an iterative procedure to calculate normal depth for a specified volumetric flow rate, channel bottom slope, channel shape and size, and Manning roughness coefficient for a reach of open channel flow
  • Performing calculations for full or partial full flow under gravity in a circular pipe
Course Document

For this professional engineering CEU course, you will need to watch the video presentation titled, “Open Channel Hydraulics I: The Manning Equation”. To access the video presentation, you will need to log in or register and purchase the course.  Following course purchase, please click on the link provided in your account history to view the video presentation. The duration of the video presentation is approximately 109 minutes.

Please note that you will be watching the video presentation via YouTube or another video streaming platform which will be streaming though
Course Quiz

Once you are finished watching the PDH video presentation, you will need to close or minimize the video portal to return to your account and click on “Take Quiz”. You will need to take a multiple-choice quiz consisting of twenty (20) questions to earn 3 PDH credits. The quiz will be based on this video presentation.

The minimum passing score is 70%. There is no time limit on the quiz, and you can take it multiple times until you pass at no additional cost.
Certificate of Completion

Upon successful completion of the quiz, print your Certificate of Completion instantly. (Note: if you are paying by check or money order, you will be able to print it after we receive your payment.) For your convenience, we will also email it to you. Please note that you can log in to your account at any time to access and print your Certificate of Completion.

To buy the course and access the video presentation, please click on: