Stability of Rubble Mound Breakwaters

by Todd L. Walton, Jr.,
J. Richard Weggle,

Serial Information: Journal of the Waterway, Port, Coastal and Ocean Division, 1981, Vol. 107, Issue 3, Pg. 195-201

Document Type: Journal Paper


Numerous investigators have shown that wave steepness, and consequently wave period, is a factor in the stability of rubble mound breakwaters. Some present design methods do not explicitly consider wave period. A modified wave steepness dependent stability number, accounting for inertia effects is presented herein. The following derivation of an equation for armor stone weight at incipient instability (motion) generally parallels an earlier derivation by Raichlen, but retains lift and inertia terms in the final analysis. As a result, a stability equation similar to that of Iribarren and Nogales is found, but which includes an inertial parameter dependent on wave steepness.

Subject Headings: Inertia | Wave equations | Riprap | Breakwaters | Armor units | Rocks | Equations of motion | Vehicles

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