Dredging Impacts on Delaware Estuary Tides

by Joseph L. DiLorenzo, Najarian Associates, Inc, Eatontown, United States,
Poshu Huang, Najarian Associates, Inc, Eatontown, United States,
M. Llewellyn Thatcher, Najarian Associates, Inc, Eatontown, United States,
Tavit O. Najarian, (M.ASCE), Najarian Associates, Inc, Eatontown, United States,



Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Estuarine and Coastal Modeling

Abstract: This study summarizes historic dredging activities and historic tidal trends in the Delaware Estuary. Since 1910, large-scale dredging and maintenance projects in the Delaware Estuary have increased navigation channel depths from approximately 20 ft (6.1 m) to 40 ft (12.2 m). Upper Delaware Estuary tidal ranges also increased approximately two-fold during this period. The potential influence of dredging activities on Delaware Estuary tides is examined through application of variable depth hydrodynamic models. The models suggest that historic increases in upper Estuary tidal ranges are associated with the deepening of middle/upper Estuary navigation channels. The models also suggest that competing effects of bottom friction and upstream `funneling' regulate tidal amplification in the Delaware Estuary and other similar systems.

Subject Headings: Estuaries | Tides | Dredging | Hydrologic models | Mathematical models | Hydrodynamics | Navigation (geomatic) | Friction | North America | Delaware | United States

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