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Dr Davide Motta

Senior Lecturer

Department: Mechanical and Construction Engineering

My specialization lies in the areas of environmental hydrology and hydraulic engineering. I have done research on the topics of river morphodynamics, water quality, and hydraulics of ancient infrastructures. I also have experience in engineering consulting practice, mainly focusing on Hydrology and Hydraulics (H&H) modeling, both in Italy and the USA.

My current research centres on ancient water systems, with focus on travertine deposits in aqueducts as record for understanding the hydrodynamics that formed them, with a view to both obtaining fundamental understanding of depositional processes and providing insights on design criteria, flow operation, and maintenance that could be useful for today’s infrastructures. In addition, the study of ancient water systems is a great opportunity for interdisciplinarity collaboration, which can be beneficial for all disciplines involved.

My other research subjects are sediment transport processes (for natural rivers as well as urban rivers where sediment transport can affect water quality, e.g., Sediment Oxygen Demand) and bank erosion and meander migration.  

I am also interested in applied research topics of increasing importance for the current engineering practice of H&H modeling, such as effects of climate change on riverine flooding and comparison of different hydraulic modeling approaches (e.g., one-dimensional vs. two-dimensional) for flooding analysis.

ResearchGate Profile

Campus Address

Wynne Jones Building
Newcastle Upon Tyne


Key Publications

  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • Applications of soft computing models for predicting sea surface temperature: a comprehensive review and assessment, Haghbin, M., Sharafati, A., Motta, D., Al-Ansari, N., Noghani, M. 5 Jan 2021, In: Progress in Earth and Planetary Science
  • Hydraulic engineering analysis of Roman water infrastructure: a review of practice and possibilities, Crapper, M., Motta, D., Keenan-jones, D., Monteleone, M. 31 Aug 2021, In: Water History
  • River water quality index prediction and uncertainty analysis: A comparative study of machine learning models, Asadollah, S., Sharafati, A., Motta, D., Yaseen, Z. 1 Feb 2021, In: Journal of Environmental Chemical Engineering
  • The Application of Soft Computing Models and Empirical Formulations for Hydraulic Structure Scouring Depth Simulation: A Comprehensive Review, Assessment and Possible Future Research Direction, Sharafati, A., Haghbin, M., Motta, D., Yaseen, Z. 1 Mar 2021, In: Archives of Computational Methods in Engineering
  • The supply of the public lacus of Pompeii, estimated from the discharge of their overflow channels, Monteleone, M., Crapper, M., Motta, D. 1 Jul 2021, In: Water History
  • Application of nature-inspired optimization algorithms to ANFIS model to predict wave-induced scour depth around pipelines, Sharafati, A., Tafarojnoruz, A., Motta, D., Yaseen, Z. 1 Nov 2020, In: Journal of Hydroinformatics
  • Application of newly developed ensemble machine learning models for daily suspended sediment load prediction and related uncertainty analysis, Sharafati, A., Haji Seyed Asadollah, S., Motta, D., Yaseen, Z. 9 Sep 2020, In: Hydrological Sciences Journal
  • Quantification and uncertainty of the impact of climate change on river discharge and sediment yield in the Dehbar river basin in Iran, Sharafati, A., Pezeshki, E., Shahid, S., Motta, D. 1 Jul 2020, In: Journal of Soils and Sediments
  • Hydraulic Evaluation of the Design and Operation of Ancient Rome's Anio Novus Aqueduct, Motta, D., Keenan-Jones, D., Garcia, M., Fouke, B. 1 Dec 2017, In: Archaeometry

PGR Supervision

Getachew Mamo Quantitative methodology for downstream impact evaluation and dam operation optimization: the case of the TAMS hydropower project in Ethiopia Start Date: 01/03/2020

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