J.P. Coakley, H.A. Savile, M. Pedrosa, M. Larocque


There are many factors which suggest that littoral zone processes in the Great Lakes differ substantially from those of the marine coasts described in the existing coastal research literature. Among these factors are the lack of an appreciable tidal cycle; the predominance of relatively short, steep, waves; the virtual absence of swell waves; and the presence of shore fast ice in winter. As a result, many of the empirical relationships derived for marine coasts might be of questionable applicability to Great Lakes coasts. The present study, which represents only one phase of a long-term project designed to develop more specific littoral transport relationships, is aimed at obtaining accurate, direct estimates of the actual littoral transport at an experimental site located at the western end of Lake Ontario. This paper will describe a mechanical system designed to collect a series of time-averaged samples of suspended sediment for concentration determinations as well as flow velocity and water depth at locations across the surf zone. Some preliminary results of the field program using the system will also be presented and discussed.


littoral drift; suspended sediment; sled system

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