Design, Construction, and Performance of a Baffled Breakwater

by Jonathan W. Lott, Coastal Engineering Research Cent, Vicksburg, United States,
Walter E. Hurtienne, Coastal Engineering Research Cent, Vicksburg, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Coastal Engineering Practice


The Spud Point Marina breakwater is located within Bodega Harbor, a protected embayment on the northern California coast. Waves are attenuated by baffle panels hung between support piles. Bottoms of panels are submerged during all normal tides. Marina flushing is relatively unimpeded since the structure is open between the panel bottoms and the seabed. Panel bottom elevation was chosen using theoretical wave height transmission results derived by Wiegel (1960). A combination of precast and cast-in-place concrete components were used to construct the breakwater. It was chosen for monitoring under the US Army Corps of Engineers' Monitoring Completed Coastal Projects (MCCP) research program because of its unusual baffled design. A field study focusing primarily on wave transmission was conducted using boat wakes. Unexpectedly high dissipation of generated waves as they crossed a shallow region fronting the breakwater prevented quantification of transmission. Flushing appeared to be satisfactory, and no evidence of scour or structural displacement was found. From the field study and other evidence it appears the breakwater is giving satisfactory wave attenuation performance. Designers of breakwaters in low wave energy environments where flushing is critical should consider a baffled structure. The contribution of site conditions (particularly the shallow flats fronting the breakwater) to this breakwater's good wave attenuation is unknown, and is probably significant.

Subject Headings: Coastal protection structures | Breakwaters | Ports and harbors | Baffles (hydraulic) | Wave attenuation | Power transmission | Flushing | United States | California

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