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Empirical and physical modeling of equilibrium beach shoreline changes

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Predicting beach shoreline changes remains a challenge given the complexity of the processes affecting sediment transport at a wide range of temporal and spatial scales. Here, two different approaches are taken to improve our understanding of sandy beach shoreline changes: (1) a data-based approach with the development of an empirical shoreline change model based on equilibrium beach profile concepts, and (2) a physical modeling approach by measuring the profile changes during storms in a series of wave flume experiments. The equilibrium model was developed with data from Torrey Pines Beach, CA, USA and has been applied at several different sites, including a macrotidal site where the effects of changing water levels are taken into account. In the second part of the talk, results from a series of wave flume experiments are presented to show the efficiency of submerged structures in reducing coastal shoreline erosion, based on an equilibrium profile approach.

This talk is part of the Biogeography and Biogeomorphology - Department of Geography series.

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