Using Sediment-Threshold Theories in Waves and Currents

by Thomas E. White, Coastal Engineering Research Cent, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Sediment Transport Modeling


Fundamentally different threshold-of-motion theories were applied to sand transport in two different coastal environments. Several recommendations for threshold application were reached. First, application of a threshold appears unnecessary in cases where the sand transport is both strong and unidirectional (i.e., longshore transport in the surfzone). Second, the difference in estimated sediment-transport rates due to different threshold theories is negligible, because the sediment motion depends on such high moments of the fluid velocity. Third, the application of a threshold theory to cross-shore transport is essential in correctly predicting the direction of transport, but it makes no significant difference as to which threshold theory is applied.

Subject Headings: Sediment | Sediment transport | Fluid velocity | Oscillatory flow | Water flow | Equations of motion | Littoral drift | Water supply systems

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