This document gives guidelines for the use of boat-mounted acoustic Doppler current profilers (ADCPs) for determining flow in open channels. It describes a number of methods of deploying ADCPs to determine flow. Although, in some cases, these measurements are intended to determine the stage-discharge relationship of a gauging station, this document deals only with single determination of discharge.
ADCPs can be used to measure a variety of parameters, such as current or stream flow, water velocity fields, and channel bathymetry. As a potential application, an idea of bedload discharge can be obtained applying the bottom track velocity, while suspended sediment flow can be obtained applying the acoustic backscatter and the sonar equation. This document is generic in form and contains no operational details specific to particular ADCP makes and models.