LITTORAL DRIFT AS FUNCTION OF WAVES AND CURRENT

E.W. Bijker

Abstract


For the computation of littoral drift due to waves hitting a coast obliquely, most formulae are based upon the assumption that this longshore transport is some function of the energy flux of the waves towards the coast. For the actual computation the component of this flux parallel to the coast is introduced. Most of the available prototype data are incorporated m the formula of the U.S. Army Coastal Engineering Research Center (ref. 4 and 1). In this formula no reference is made to the gram size and the slopes of beach and foreshore. The explanation for the fact that nevertheless reasonable results are obtained is probably owing to the fact that variation of gram size and beach slope for sandy beaches is not so very great. A more serious disadvantage is, however, that it is not possible to take into account the influence of a possible longshore current which is not generated by the wave motion, such as for instance tidal currents. In this paper an attempt is made to compute the littoral drift, starting from the longshore current velocity as it is generated by the waves or as it may originate from other causes (ref. 4). For the actual computation of the bed load transport a normal bed load transport formula is used, in which, however, according to the method developed by the author in earlier studies, the bed shear is increased as a result of the wave motion (ref. 2). From the tests briefly described in the present paper it becomes clear that the transport may be treated indeed as a function of the longshore current, even when this current has a direction opposite to that of the component of the wave propagation parallel to the coast.

Keywords


littoral drift; sediments and current

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