Ming Li, John Nicholson, Shunqi Pan, Brian A O'Connor


A two-dimensional morphological model is used to study sediment transport and morphdynamics around a tidal inlet. The model includes the processes of erosion on side slope for the avalanching effects. The model has been tested against a laboratory study of an idealised tidal inlet configuration over 68 tidal cycles. The results show a reasonable agreement between the model and experiment measurements with a typical pattern of accretion at up-drift of the inlet and erosion at the down-drift. This study also reveals the importance of surface waves and cross-shore sediment transport to the evolution and migration of the tidal inlet.


sediment transport; morphology; tide; numerical model; tidal inlet

Full Text:



Anastasiou, K. and Bokaris, J. (2000) Physical and numerical study of 2-D wave breaking and non- linear effects. Proceedings of the international Conference on Coastal Engineering, (Ed) Smith, J. M., Sydney, Australia, World Scientific, 382 – 395.

Bertin, X., Oliveira, A., Fortunato, A.B., 2009a. Simulating morphodynamics with unstructured grids: description and validation of a modeling system for coastal applications. Ocean Modelling 28 (1– 3), 75–87.

Bruun, P., Mehta, A.J., Johnsson, I.G., 1978. Stability of Tidal Inlets. Theory and Engineering, Elsevier Scientific, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, p. 506.

Chester, T. (1995) Numerical morphodynamic modelling of Keta Lagoon, in Dally, W. and Zeidler R. (Ed) Proceedings of the International Conference on Coastal Research in Terms of Large Scale Experiments, Portland, ASCE, New York.

Davis, R.A., Barnard, P., 2003. Morphodynamics of the barrier–inlet system, westcentral Florida. Marine Geology 200 (2003), 77–101.

De Vriend, H.J., Capobianco, M., Chesher, T., de Swart, H.E., Latteux, B., Stive, M.J.F., 1993. Approaches to long-term modelling of coastal morphology: a review. Coastal Engineering 21 (1– 3), 225–269.

Delft Hydraulics (1982) Outfall Keta Lagoon, Report M 1613, 63pp.

Fernando, P. T. and Pan S. (2005) Modelling wave of hydrodynamics around a scheme of detached

leaky breakwaters, Proceeding of the 29th International conference on Coastal Engineering, (Ed)

Smith, J. M., Lisbon, Portugal, World Scientific, 830-841.

Hayes, M.O., 1979. Barrier Island morphology as a function of tidal and wave regime. In: Leatherman

(Ed.), Barrier Island. Academic Press, New York, pp. 1–28.

Hayes, M.O., 1980. General morphology and sediment patterns in tidal inlets. Sedimentary Geology,

vol. 26. Elsevier, Amsterdam, pp. 139–156.

Dissanayake, D., Roelvink, J. and van der Wegen M. (2009) Modelled channel patterns in a

schematized tidal inlet, Coastal Engineering (56), 1069-1083

Li, M., Fernando, P., Pan, S., O’Connor, B.A., Chen, D. (2007) Development of a quasi-3d numerical

model for sediment transport prediction in the coastal region, Journal of Hydro-environment

Research (1), 143-156.

O’Connor, B. A., Pan, S., Heron, M., Williams, J., Voulgaris, G., and Silva, A. (2000) Hydrodynamic

modelling of a dynamic inlet, Proceedings of the International Conference on Coastal

Engineering, (Ed) Smith, J. M., Sydney, Australia, World Scientific, 3472-3481.

O’Connor, B.A. and Nicholson, J. 1997. Tidal sediment transport. In: Acinas, J.R. and Brebbia, C.A. (Editors), Computer Modelling of Seas and Coastal Regions III, Computational Mechanics

Publications, 367-379.

Van Der Wegen, M., Dastgheib, A., Roelvink, J.A., 2010. Morphodynamic modelling of tidal channel

evolution in comparison to empirical PA relationship. Coastal Engineering 57, 827–837.

Van Der Vegt, M., Schuttelaars, H.M., De Swart, H.E., 2006. Modelling the equilibrium of tide-

dominated ebb-tidal deltas. Journal of Geophysical Research 111, F02013.

Watanabe, A. and Maruyama, K (1986) Numerical modelling of nearshore wave field under combined

refraction, diffraction and breaking, Coastal Engineering in Japan, 29, 19-39.

Yoo, D., Hedges, T. and O’Connor B. A. (1989) Numerical modelling of reflective waves on slowly

varying currents, Advances in water modelling and measurements (Ed) Palmer, M.H., 297-306.