BACKFILLING OF TRENCHES EXPOSED TO WAVES

Jacob Hjelmager Jensen, Jorgen Fredsoe

Abstract


This paper treats the numerical prediction of initial and long-term morphology of small pipeline trenches. For this purpose a refined flow and sediment transport description is applied such that the entire mathematical problem is formulated and solved on a curvilinear grid using a k — e turbulence-closure. The backfilling process of trenches exposed to either waves or a steady current is of importance in relation to the implementation of pipelines in the marine environment. With respect to the sedimentation of trenches, the non-dimensional Trench-Keulegan- Carpenter number, KC = a/L, where a is the excursion length of a particle in waves and L the trench length, is investigated in detail, and an optimal KC-numher for the backfilling rate is found. Coherent structures in the non-uniform unsteady trench-flow are shown to dominate the deposition rate when present. The importance of a detailed description of the flow is further justified by comparing predictions of a very simple flow-model neglecting convective terms with the sophisticated flow-model.

Keywords


trench; backfill; numerical prediction

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