Issues Related to Modeling the Transport of Suspended Sediments in Northern San Francisco Bay, California

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by Ellen Thomas McDonald, U.S. Geological Survey, Menlo Park, United States,
Ralph T. Cheng, U.S. Geological Survey, Menlo Park, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Estuarine and Coastal Modeling:

Abstract: Measurements of suspended sediment concentrations at several deep-channel stations in San Francisco Bay are reviewed. Sediment concentrations are found to be strongly correlated with delta outflow, tidal, and spring/neap variations. However, little to no correlation is observed between wind speed and sediment concentration in the deep channel. A two-dimensional depth-averaged sediment transport model has been developed which includes the effects of tidal and spring-neap variations and wind-generated resuspension. During a period of low delta outflow, the model successfully reproduces field measurements of suspended sediment concentration at a station in San Pablo Bay. The model is found to be most sensitive to critical shear stresses, settling velocity, and the erosion rate constant.

Subject Headings: Suspended sediment | Sediment transport | Bays | Shear stress | Hydrologic models | Tides | Outflow | North America | California | United States

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