Tsunami Runup Attenuation By Onshore Obstacles


  • IVO VAN BALEN Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
  • JONAS CELS University College London, United Kingdom
  • KEITH ADAMS London South Bank University, United Kingdom
  • MARCO BAIGUERA University of Southampton, United Kingdom
  • TIZIANA ROSSETTO University College London, United Kingdom
  • ALESSANDRO ANTONINI Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
  • DAVIDE WÜTHRICH Delft University of Technology, Delft, the Netherlands
  • DENIS ISTRATI National Technical University of Athens, Greece
  • EUGENY BULDAKOV University College London, United Kingdom
  • IAN CHANDLER HR Wallingford, United Kingdom
  • DAVID MCGOVERN London South Bank University, United Kingdom




Tsunami mitigation, Tsunami wave, Pneumatic generation, Runup attenuation


In a time of climate emergency due to global warming, nature-based coastal defence systems are attractive solutions for flood mitigation and adaptation. Coastal forests such as mangroves have received a growing interest for their disaster mitigation effectiveness such as water flow energy dissipation, hence helping communities to become more resilient (Iimura & Tanaka, 2012). The role of coastal forests as a defence measure was highlighted in the aftermath of the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, which claimed the lives of more than 200,000 people and displaced millions more across fourteen countries. Post-disaster damage observations indicated that forests, particularly mangroves, reduced the impact of the tsunami wave in some locations. As a result, significant international relief and reconstruction efforts focused on extensive forest replantation of coastlines (Satake, 2014).

The role of coastal vegetation in reducing the severity of tsunami waves has been studied since. Several studies using physical modelling and computational approaches have provided insights into the wave attenuation provided by coastal vegetation, in terms of relationships between incident hydrodynamic conditions, forest configurations and wave height decay. However, there are still many gaps in knowledge, particularly in quantifying the efficacy of coastal forests in reducing inland hydrodynamic conditions (Tomiczek et al., 2020). It is therefore essential to improve the understanding on how wave heights, velocities and runup are influenced by the characteristics of the “obstacles”, e.g. the forest density, as well as the incident hydrodynamic conditions, e.g. the wave period. This study aims to address these questions conducting physical experiments using the novel pneumatic Tsunami Simulator (TS) developed by HR Wallingford together with UCL (Rossetto et al., 2011).




Conference Proceedings Volume


Extended abstracts