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Alongshore Variability in the Response of a Mixed Sand and Gravel Beach to Bimodal Wave Direction.

Atkinson, J. and Esteves, L., 2018. Alongshore Variability in the Response of a Mixed Sand and Gravel Beach to Bimodal Wave Direction. Geosciences, 8 (12), 488.

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2019 geosciences-08-00488.pdf - Published Version
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DOI: 10.3390/geosciences8120488


Characterising spatial and temporal variations in coastal behaviour is essential for the management of beach systems. Recent studies have shown that beach response is more complex in coasts subjected to bimodal wave directions. Despite being pervasive at higher latitudes, relatively little is known about the spatial variability in the response of mixed sand and gravel beaches. This work presents evidence that the response of mixed sand and gravel beaches to bimodal wave directions can be highly variable (both in magnitude and direction of change) even within short shoreline stretches. The analyses focused on beach topography data collected between 2009 and 2018 along five cross-shore transects within a 2-km-long shoreline in Suffolk (East England) and offshore wave data recorded at the West Gabbard Smart buoy. The dominant offshore wave direction oscillates between the southwest and the northeast from year to year, and the bimodal beach sediment has modes at 0.35 mm and 16 mm. Analyses were undertaken considering two timeframes: Biannual surveys from January 2009 to February 2018, and more intensive surveying (from seasonal to pre- and post-storm) from July 2016 to March 2018. Results highlighted large differences in beach response even between transects 350 m apart and no clear seasonal pattern of change. Instead, response seemed to depend on a complex interaction between wave power, dominant wave direction, and local settings. Although correlations were identified between indicators of beach change and wave conditions, these varied across transects. Divergence of longshore transport may occur locally, likely influencing the high alongshore variability.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:mixed beaches ; morphology ; beach response ; bimodal wave direction ; UK
Group:Faculty of Science & Technology
ID Code:31629
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:11 Jan 2019 16:48
Last Modified:14 Mar 2022 14:14


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