The main objective of this research is to investigate the governing processes and characteristics that drive morphodynamic evolution in alluvial estuaries by application of a process-based numerical model (Delft3D). It is of utmost importance to understand estuarine processes so that impact of human interference (like dredging and land reclamation) and long-term changes (like sea level rise) can be evaluated.
The research addresses a number of cases ranging from an rectangular basins to real estuaries like the Western Scheldt in the Netherlands or San Pablo Bay in California. The more schematized approach allow to study morphodynamic evolution over several millennia under constant forcing and answers more fundamental questions related to conditions of equilibrium and related time scales. The more realistic cases give insight into the skill of the approach in predicting decadal morphodynamic developments. More processes are included to mimic realistic conditions and model results are compared to bathymetric measurements over the last century.
The research shows that the modeling approach is good capable of describing stable morphodynamic calculations over a timescale of millennia with patterns similar to patterns observed in reality. Additionally, the approach shows that it is possible to predict decadal morphodynamic developments in real estuaries with significant skill.
1. Framework for Morphodynamic Modeling in Alluvial Estuaries 2. Schematized 1D and 2D Model Results and Western Scheldt Data 3. Bank Erosion and Energy Dissipation in an Idealized Tidal Embayment 4. Morphodynamic Modeling of Tidal Channel Evolution in Comparison to Empirical PA Relationship 5. Reproduction of the Wester Scheldt Bathymetry by means of a Process-Based, Morphodynamic Model 6. Proces-Based, Morphodynamic Hindcast of Decadal Deposition Patterns in San Pablo Bay 1856-1887 7. Conclusions and Recommendations
IHE Delft PhD programme leads to a deepening of a field of specialisation. PhD fellows do scientific research, often with conclusions that directly influence their region. At IHE Delft, PhD researchers from around the world participate in problem-focused and solution-oriented research on development issues, resulting in an inspiring research environment. PhD fellows work together with other researchers from many countries dealing with topics related to water and the environment.
PhD research is often carried out in the ‘sandwich’ model. Preparation and final reporting – the first and last portion of the programme – are carried out in Delft, while actual research is done in the fellow’s home country, under co-supervision of a local institute. Regular contacts with the promotor are maintained through visits and long-distance communication. This enables researchers to employ solutions directly to problems in their geographical region.
IHE Delft PhD degrees are awarded jointly with a university. The degrees are highly valued and fully recognised in all parts of the world.