Experimental investigation on sea ripple evolution over sloping beaches
This paper reports on a wave flume experimental campaign carried out to investigate the appearance, the growth and the migration of small scale bedforms on a sloping sandy bed due to both regular and random waves. A Vectrino Profiler along with a structured light approach were used for velocity and morphodynamic measurements at two positions, one located above the horizontal bed, and the other one above the sloping beach. The velocity was computed by phase averaging the velocity measurements. Several velocity profiles were analyzed, identifying an offshore-directed steady current that extends from few centimeters above the bottom for all the analyzed water column. Ripple geometry was measured by a structured light approach and compared with that predicted by several models to shed light on the effects induced by the sloping beach on the shape and asymmetry. Along the sloping beach, the ripples appeared strongly asymmetric with the onshore half wavelengths smaller than the offshore ones. Finally, ripple geometry and migration triggered by regular waves were compared with those generated by random waves with comparable flow orbital amplitude showing a good agreement.
KeywordsBedform morphodynamics Hydrodynamics Ripples Sloping beach Equilibrium conditions
The authors wish to thank the anonymous Referees and the Associate Editor for their valuable comments.
This research has been partially funded by the Italian Ministero dell’Istruzione, dell’Università e della Ricerca through the PRIN 2012 Project ’Hydromorphodynamic modeling of coastal processes for engineering purposes’.
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