A.W. Smith, A.D. Gordon


The basic concept of coastal littoral drift consisting of a "river" of sand driven by the direct alongshore component of oblique waves has long been considered as a basis for littoral transport equations. This concept however is highly simplified since the actual littoral drift on real beaches represents only the final result of the inter-action of dozens or perhaps hundreds of secondary hydraulic processes which continuously occur in Nature. On many Coasts littoral transport is taken to represent the primary mechanism of beach recession or build-up but many of the secondary mechanisms themselves are only partially understood and their individual contributions to the primary process largely unexplored. This paper therefore discusses some of these secondary processes and since offshore- onshore sediment transport is probably the most important of these a mechanism for this transport mode is suggested based upon the interaction between wave energy and a work capacity parameter for the beach sediments.


sediment transport; secondary transport; transport mechanisms

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