A Morphological Assessment On The Effects Of Embankments On Sediment Transport In Sandy Estuaries


  • EISE W. NOTA Utrecht University, Department of Physical Geography
  • MAARTEN G. KLEINHANS Utrecht University, Department of Physical Geography, Netherlands




Estuary, bank protection, scour depth, sediment transport, morphology


Many large estuaries around the world are engineered to some degree for both flood protection of coastal communities and maintenance of economically vital shipping routes. Engineering challenges arise due to the highly dynamic morphological nature of estuaries, where the complex processes of sediment transport are driven by an interplay between the turbulent flows of rivers and tides. Naturally, the planforms of sandy estuaries have the tendency to converge landwards exponentially, where deviations from this shape provide alternating space and constrictions where tidal sandbars and channels form (Leuven et al., 2018-a; 2018-b). In the case of embankment by bank protection and dikes, such topographically forced channels can develop deep scour holes that endanger bank stability. Our objective is to study effects of channel and planform dynamics on scour depth variation near protected banks. To this end, we conducted scale experiments of estuaries with completely fixed banks in the tilting tidal flume the Metronome (Kleinhans et al., 2017). We study the effects of these fixed banks on the morphological behaviour of the channel pattern through one experiment, two repeat experiments, and a control without fixed banks. By collection of much longer timeseries than available in nature, we use the experiments to shed light on the topographic forcing and channel dynamics of these systems, and on the repeatability of Metronome experiments.




Conference Proceedings Volume


Extended abstracts