The Assign Cross Sections command is used to select an existing polyline on the Map View, assign it as a cross section, and have the software extract the HEC‑RAS cross section geometry from the underlying ground terrain.
Follow these steps to use the Assign Cross Sections command:
- From the Input ribbon menu, select the Cross Sections menu item and then choose the Assign Cross Sections command.
- The Assign Cross Sections dialog box will be displayed.
The following sections describe the Assign Cross Sections command and how to interact with the above dialog box.
Select Cross Section Polyline
This section is used to interactively select a polyline from the Map View for assigning as a HEC‑RAS cross section. Click the [Pick] button and the dialog box will temporarily disappear. A prompt will be displayed on the status line, informing the user what to do next. Within the Map View, click on a polyline to assign as a cross section. Note that the selected polyline must overlay a pre-existing river reach or the software will report this as an issue. See this section on defining river reaches.
After selecting a polyline, the software will then construct the cross section and then prompt the user to select the next polyline for assigning as a cross section. When finished assigning cross sections, right-click and choose Cancel from the displayed context menu or press the Esc key. The software will return the user to the dialog box.
Cross Section River Stationing
This section is used to define the river stationing of the selected cross sections. After selecting a cross section polyline, the software will automatically compute the river station of the cross section based upon other cross sections already assigned to the river reach and the parameters defined in this section.
For the cross sections being constructed, the river stationing value after the decimal point can be defined using the Decimal precision spin control. Cross sections can be numbered using a fixed increment or by the river chainage along the river reach. The river chainage can be in miles or feet when working in US units, or kilometers or meters when working in metric (SI) units.
This tabbed panel is used to define the data extraction specifications for the assigned cross sections.
Extract Elevation Data
This optional section is used to define the elevation data source to be used for extracting the cross section geometry. Depending upon the elevation data source type that is selected, different options are provided to specify additional elevation data information.
See this section for information on the types of terrain elevation data that can be used for constructing cross sections.
If the section checkbox is unchecked, then the subsequent sections below it will be unavailable (i.e., grayed out). In addition, no geometry will be created when the cross section is created. The cross section will just be a flat horizontal line at elevation 0.
Cross Section Geometry Extraction Control
This optional section is used to control the amount of cross section geometry to extract for the selected polyline. This assures that an adequately deep enough cross section is created on both sides of the river reach. The software will attempt to retrieve the cross section geometry data to the depth specified within the maximum cross section width specified.
If the selected polyline does not extend outward far enough to get the cross section depth specified, the software will automatically extend the constructed cross section further outward. Similarly, if the selected polyline extends too far outward for the depth specified, the software will automatically trim the constructed cross section.
This tabbed panel is used to define channel bank locations based upon the options selected for the constructed cross sections.
Assign Bank Stations
This optional section is used to construct HEC‑RAS channel bank locations based upon the selected option. The following options are available:
Define by Channel Width
This option will assign the bank stations using a defined channel width. The software will first determine where the thalweg location is on the cross section. It will then move outward from the thalweg equally until the requested channel width is reached.
Define by Channel Depth
This option will assign the bank stations using an assumed normal flow depth and a maximum channel width search distance. The software will first determine where the thalweg location is on the cross section. It will then move outward from the thalweg until the requested channel depth is reached within the maximum channel width specified.
Define by Bank Polylines/Polygons
This option will assign the bank stations using selected polylines or polygons. The software will first determine where the thalweg location is on the cross section. It will then move outward from the thalweg until a previously selected bank polyline or polygon edge is reached.
Assignment of Manning’s Roughness and Flow Lengths
During the construction of the HEC‑RAS cross section, the software will automatically assign a default Manning’s roughness for the left overbank, channel, and right overbank areas. In addition, the flow length to the next downstream cross section is determined. If inserting a new cross section between two adjacent cross sections, the software will automatically adjust the flow length of the next upstream cross section to account for the insertion of the new cross section.