The Morphodynamics Behaviour of a Cross-Shore Sandbar in a Microtidal Environment, Anjos Cove, Arraial do Cabo, Rio de Janeiro – Brazil

  • João Wagner Alencar CastroEmail author
Part of the Coastal Research Library book series (COASTALRL, volume 24)


The nearshore environment is a very dynamic and complex system with interaction of waves, currents and sediments movement on the inner continental shelf. Some of the most common morphological features are the cross-shore sandbars. The present work investigate the evolution of an offshore sandbar located off Anjos cove, Rio de Janeiro, within a time span of 55 years, based on 6 bathymetric surveys and the sediment distribution analysis. The bathymetric data were used to evaluate the morphodynamic evolution and to calculate the sediment volume changes. The morphology of studied sandbar area extents up to 2002 m, with a length of 1052 m and average depth between - 1.0 to - 2.0 m, and usually increase both volume and extension in the southwest direction. The difference in area and volume during the studied period was 310,851 m2 and 1157,772 m3 respectively. These results show that the cross-shore sandbar migrated preferable shoreward during moderate to severe storm conditions from the northeast quadrant. The northeast waves are responsible for the sediment transportation and deposition in the sandbar environment. These conditions explain the low rate, 1.72 m/years, of migration in the cross-shore sandbar studied. This rate is lower than usual rates reported to microtidal environments. The morphological feature studied has the same direction northeast - southwest of the dunefields located in the region of Arraial do Cabo and Cabo Frio. Along the years, if the same deposition condition is preserved, it will be expected the formation of a barrier island in the sandbar area.


Cross-shore sandbar Morphodynamics Microtidal environments Bathymetrics charts Arraial do Cabo, Brazil 



We would you like to thank Professor Agenor Cunha da Silva and the Geologist Raquel Medeiros Fonseca from Brazilian Navy for the support during the field works on the sea.


  1. Aubrey DG, Twichell DC, Pfirman SL (1981) Holocene sedimentation in the shallow nearshore zone off Nauset inlet, Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Mar Geol 47:243–259CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Barcilon AI, Lau JP (1973) A model for formation of transverse bars. J Geophys Res 78(15):2656–2664CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Byrnes MR (1989) Superduck Beach sediment sampling experiment. Report 1. Data summary and initial Observations, miscellaneous report CERC-89-18. U.S. Army coastal engineering research center, 56Google Scholar
  4. Cacchione WDG, Tate GB (1984) Rippled scour depressions on the inner continental shelf off central California. J Sediment Petrol 54:1280–1291Google Scholar
  5. Cambazoglu MK, Haas KA, Hanes DM (2006) Numerical investigations on the effect of wave skewness on sandbar migration. In Proceedings of 30th International conference on Coastal Engineering, 1, San Diego, USA, 58–76.Google Scholar
  6. Castro JWA (1998) Dunas submarinas como fonte de sedimentos para recuperação de praias em erosão na cidade de Fortaleza - Ceará / Brasil. Revista Geosul 14:218–222Google Scholar
  7. Castro JWA, Suguio K, Seoane JCS, Cunha AM, Dias FF (2014) Sea-level fluctuations and coastal evolution in the state of Rio de Janeiro, southeastern Brazil. Annals of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences 86(2):671–683CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Dean RGD and Work PA (1993) Interaction of navigational entrances with adjacent shorelines. J Coast Res, 18, 91–110 (Special Issue).Google Scholar
  9. Dean RGD, Liotta R Simone G (1999) Erosional hotspots. Prepared for Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Office of Beaches and Coastal Systems, Tallahassee, FL. 434Google Scholar
  10. Demirci M, Aköz SM, Üneş F (2014) Experimental investigation of cross-shore sandbar volumes. J Coast Conserv 18:11–16CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Fonseca RBM (2012) Evolução batimétrica e sedimentológica do banco de areia “sandbar” da Enseada dos Anjos, Arraial do Cabo, Rio de Janeiro. Unpublished Master Dissertation, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, 92Google Scholar
  12. Green MO, Vincent CE, Trembanis AC (2004) Suspension of coarse and fine sand on a wave-dominated shoreface, with implications for the development of rippled scour depressions. Cont Shelf Res 24(3):317–335CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Gyllencreutz R, Mahiques MM, Alves DVP, Wainer IKC (2012) Mid to late-Holocene paleoceonographic changes on the southeeastern Brazilian shelf based on grain size records. The Holocene 20(6):863–875CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Komar PD (1998) Beach processes and sedimentation, 2nd edn. Prentice Hall, New Jersey, p 544Google Scholar
  15. Konicki KM, Holman RA (2000) The statistics and kinematics of transverse sand bars on an open coast. Mar Geol 169:69–101CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Kkuriyama Y (2009) Numerical model for bar migration at Hasaki, Japan. In: Proceedings of the Coastal Dynamics, Tokyo, Japan, 50Google Scholar
  17. Leonardo DD, Ruggiero P (2015) Regional scale sandbar variability: observations from the U.S. pacific northwest. Cont Shelf Res 95:74–88CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Lippman T, Holman RA (1989) Quantification of sandbar morphology: a video technique based on wave dissipation. J Geophys Res 94(C1):995–1011CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Mcninch JE (2004) Geologic control in the nearshore: shore-oblique sandbars and shoreline erosional hotspots, mid-Atlantic bight, USA. Mar Geol 211(1–2):121–141CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Murray AB, Thieler ER (2004) A new hypothesis and exploratory model for the formation of large-scale inner-shelf sediment sorting and rippled scour depressions. Cont Shelf Res 24(3):295–315CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Nniedoroda AW, Tanner WF (1970) Preliminary study of transverse bars. Mar Geol 9:41–62CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Schupp CA, Mcninch JE, List JH (2006) Nearshore shore-oblique bars, gravel outcrops, and their correlation to shoreline change. Mar Geol 233(1–4):63–69CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Short AD (1993) Single and multi-bar beach change models. J Coast Res Spec Issue 15:141–157Google Scholar
  24. Snedden W, Dalrymple RW (1998) Modern shelf sand ridges: historical review of modern examples and a unified model of ridge origin and evolution, Concepts Sedimentology and Paleontology. SEPM 6:1–16Google Scholar
  25. Silva AC (2009) Dinâmica Batimétrica e Sedimentológica da Região do Cabo Frio, Estado do Rio de Janeiro. Tese de Doutorado (Geologia). Instituto de Geociências, UFRJ, Rio de Janeiro, 157Google Scholar
  26. Swift DJP, Field ME (1981) Evolution of a classic sandridge field: Maryland sector, North American inner shelf. Sedimentology 28:461–482CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Van Enckevort BG, Ruessink G, Coco K, Suzuki IL, Turner NG, Plant L, Holman RA (2004) Observations of nearshore crescentic sandbars. J Geophys Res 109:28–60Google Scholar
  28. Wijnberg KM, Kroon A (2002) Barred beaches. Geomorphology 48:103–120CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Wright LD (1995) Morphodynamics of inner continental shelves. CRC Press, Boca Raton, p 432Google Scholar
  30. Wright LD, Short AD (1984) Morphodynamic variability of surf zones and beaches: a synthesis. Mar Geol 56:93–118CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Rio de Janeiro Federal University – UFRJ/National Museum/Department of Geology and Paleontology – Coastal Geology, Sedimentology and Environmental Laboratory – LAGECOSTRio de JaneiroBrazil

Personalised recommendations