In most cases, the method of characteristics is used to calculate the propagation of water hammer in hydraulic systems due to the size of those pipings, although three-dimensional effects are known to occur. In order to investigate and quantify these effects, a three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics simulation of water hammer through a bend geometry was performed. For the resolution of the developing high spatial and temporal gradients an adequate mesh and suitable physical model was generated using a commercial code. The applicability of unsteady Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes simulation was evaluated considering the turbulent properties of the flow using results from the literature. Furthermore velocity, pressure, wall shear stress and vorticity distributions are presented. The effect of the 90° bend as three-dimensional element was identified and the impact on the flow field is presented. In the end, the annular effect is discussed. Due to the high forces of inertia in the boundary layer and the dominating viscous forces close to the wall, high velocity gradients are developing resulting in high wall shear stresses. It is shown that the viscous and turbulent transport of momentum in the radial direction reduces these velocity gradients and limits the maximum occurring wall shear stress.

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