Multiple Scales of Suspended Sediment Dynamics in a Complex Geometry Estuary: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Multiple Scales of Suspended Sediment Dynamics in a Complex Geometry Estuary

1st Edition

By Fernanda Minikowski Achete

CRC Press

138 pages

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Paperback: 9781138029767
pub: 2016-06-08

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Many estuaries are located in urbanized, highly engineered environments. Cohesive sediment plays an important role due to its link with estuarine health and ecology. An important ecological parameter is the suspended sediment concentration (SSC) translated into turbidity levels and sediment budget.

This study contributes to investigate and forecast turbidity levels and sediment budget variability at San Francisco Bay-Delta system at a variety of spatial and temporal scales applying a flexible mesh process-based model (Delft3D FM). It is possible to have a robust sediment model, which reproduces 90% of the yearly data derived sediment budget, with simple model settings, like applying one mud fraction and a simple bottom sediment distribution. This finding opens the horizon for modeling less monitored estuaries.

Comparing two case studies, i.e. the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and Alviso Slough, a classification for estuaries regarding the main sediment dynamic forcing is proposed: event-driven estuary (Delta) and tide-driven estuary (Alviso Slough). In the event-driven estuaries, the rivers are the main sediment source and the tides have minor impact in the net sediment transport. In the tide-driven estuaries, the main sediment source is the bottom sediment and the tide asymmetry defines the net sediment transport.

This research also makes advances in connecting different scientific fields and developing a managerial tool to support decision making. It provides the basis to a chain of models, which goes from the hydrodynamics, to suspended sediment, to phytoplankton, to fish, clams and marshes.

Table of Contents

1 General introduction

1.1 Background

1.1.1 Hydrodynamics

1.1.2 Sediment dynamics

1.1.3 Sediment and ecology

1.1.4 Spatial‐temporal scale

1.1.5 Modeling framework

1.2 Motivation: the CASCaDE II project and BDCP

1.2.1 CASCaDE II project

1.2.2 BDCP

1.3 Research objectives

1.4 Outline of the thesis

2 A 2D Process-Based Model for Suspended Sediment Dynamics: a first Step towards Ecological Modeling

2.1 Introduction

2.2 Study area and model

2.2.1 Model description

2.2.2 Initial and boundary conditions

2.3 Results

2.3.1 Calibration

2.3.2 Suspended Sediment Dynamics (water year 2011)

2.3.3 Sensitivity analysis

2.4 Discussion

2.4.1 Spatial sediment distribution

2.4.2 Sediment budget

2.4.3 Sediment flux analysis

2.4.4 Sediment deposition pattern

2.4.5 Turbidity

2.4.6 Data input discussion

2.5 Conclusions

Appendix 2‐A: Hydrodynamic Calibration

Appendix 2-B: SSC Calibration

3 Suspended Sediment Dynamics in a tidal channel network under Peak River Flow

3.1 Introduction

3.2 Study Area

3.3 Methodology

3.3.1 Model description

3.3.2 Initial and boundary conditions

3.3.3 Calculation of sediment discharge and bed level change

3.3.4 Model calibration and dynamics

3.4 Results

3.4.1 Mass storage between Sacramento River stations

3.4.2 Hydrodynamics

3.4.3 Suspended sediment discharge

3.5 Discussion

3.5.1 Hydrodynamics

3.5.2 Suspended sediment discharge

3.5.3 Deposition pattern

3.5.4 Tidal influence

3.5.5 Simulating the second discharge peak

3.5.6 Recommendations

3.6 Conclusions

4 Impact of a sudden tidal prism increase in estuarine sediment flux: implications to remobilization of Hg-contaminated sediment

4.1 Introduction

4.2 Study area

4.2.1 Model description

4.2.2 Initial and boundary conditions

4.3 Results and discussion

4.3.1 Hydrodynamic model

4.3.2 Sediment Calibration

4.3.3 Sediment dynamics

4.3.4 Tidal prism step increase

4.3.5 High river discharge events implications

4.3.6 Sensitivity in sediment flux

4.3.7 Morphological updating

4.3.8 Tracking mercury‐contaminated sediment

4.4 Conclusions

5 How important are climate change and foreseen engineering measures on the sediment dynamics in the San Francisco Bay-Delta system?

5.1 Introduction

5.2 Study Area

5.2.1 Bay history

5.3 Methodology

5.3.1 Model description

5.3.2 Scenarios

5.4 Results

5.4.1 Base‐Case scenario (BCS)

5.4.2 Scenarios comparison

5.4.3 Pumping Scenario ‐ SacraP

5.4.4 Flooded Island Scenario ‐ F‐isl

5.4.5 Sea Level Rise scenario at 2100 ‐ SLRS

5.4.6 Sea Level Rise scenario at 2100 and decrease of SSC‐ SLRS, 38%SSC

5.4.7 Sea Level Rise scenario at 2100 and Pumping at Sacramento River ‐ SLR+SacraP

5.4.8 Sea Level Rise scenario at 2100, Pumping at Sacramento River and Flooded Island ‐SLRS+SacraP+Fisl

5.5 Discussion

5.5.1 Process‐based model approach

5.5.2 Scenarios sediment budget uncertainties

5.5.3 Internal Impacts ‐ Pumping Scenario

5.5.4 External Impacts ‐ SLR and SLR with decrease of SSC input

5.5.5 Non predictable Impacts ‐ Levee Failure

5.5.6 Yearly variability

5.5.7 Ecological Impact


5.6 Conclusions

6 Conclusions

6.1 General

6.2 Recommendations for future research

7 References

About the Author

Fernanda Minikowski Achete was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on 6 September 1986. She obtained her B.Sc. in Oceanography in 2008 at the Faculty of Oceanography, State University in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In 2011, she obtained her MSc in Coastal Engineering and Maritime Management (CoMEM) from an Erasmus Mundus partnership between the Technical University Delft in The Netherlands, the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Norway and the Polytechnic University of Catalonia in Spain. The thesis, "Ameland Bornrif: a case study for the sand engine", covered beach morphodynamics, and investigated the evolution of the mega nourishment, named the San Engine. The research was funded by Deltares, as part of the Building with Nature project.

In October 2011, Fernanda Achete continued her PhD research at the Department of Water Science and Engineering at UNESCO-IHE, TU Delft in The Netherlands. Her research was part the project Computational Assessments of Scenarios of Change for Delta Ecosystem (CASCaDE II), a United State Geological Survey (USGS) multidisciplinary project funded by Calfed and partially funded by the Brazilian Government via Capes agency.

About the Series

IHE Delft PhD Thesis Series

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.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SCIENCE / Earth Sciences / General
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Civil / Dams & Reservoirs