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.
Table of Contents
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
Mick van der Wegen studied Civil Engineering at Delft University of Technology. He then joined the International Institute for Infrastructural, Hydraulic and Environmental Engineering (IHE) in Delft and has worked on Coastal Engineering and Port Development. His main subjects of expertise are salt intrusion and density currents, integrated coastal zone management and morphodynamic modeling of coastal systems.