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Earth Surface Dynamics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/esurf-2019-6
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/esurf-2019-6
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 27 Feb 2019

Research article | 27 Feb 2019

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This discussion paper is a preprint. It has been under review for the journal Earth Surface Dynamics (ESurf). A final paper in ESurf is not foreseen.

Storm-induced sediment supply to coastal dunes on sand flats

Filipe Galiforni Silva, Kathelijne M. Wijnberg, and Suzanne J. M. H. Hulscher Filipe Galiforni Silva et al.
  • Water Engineering & Management, Faculty of Engineering Technology, University of Twente, P.O. Box 217, 7500 AE, Enschede, the Netherlands

Abstract. Marine supply of sand can control the development and morphology of coastal dunes. However, processes that control the sediment transfer between sub-tidal and the supra-tidal zone are not fully understood, especially in coastal settings such as sand-flats close to inlets. It is hypothesised that storm surge events induce sediment deposition on sand-flats, so that this may influence dune development significantly. Therefore, the objective of this study is to identify which processes causes deposition on the sand-flat during storm-surge conditions and discuss the relation between the supra-tidal deposition and sediment supply to the dunes. We use the island of Texel as a case study, on which multi-annual topographic and hydrographic data sets are available. Additionally, we use the numerical model XBeach to simulate the most frequent storm surge events for the area. Results show that a supra-tidal shore-parallel deposition of sand occurs in both the numerical model and the data. The amount of sand deposition is directly proportional to surge level, and can account for more than half of the volume deposited at the dunes on a yearly basis. Furthermore, storms are also capable of remobilising the top layer of sediment of the sand-flat, making fresh sediment available for aeolian transport. Therefore, in a sand-flat setting, storm surges have the potential of adding significant amounts of sand for aeolian transport in periods after the storm, suggesting that storms play a significant role in the onshore sand supply between sub-tidal and subaerial zones in those areas.

Filipe Galiforni Silva et al.
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Interactive discussion
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Status: closed
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Filipe Galiforni Silva et al.
Filipe Galiforni Silva et al.
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Short summary
Storms are often related to coastal dune erosion. We found that, for specific coastal settings, storms may enhance dune growth rather than only undermine it. Using a computer model and long-term monitoring data, we see that storms may bring sand from areas that are frequently inundated to areas that are often above the water. When above the water, this sand can be more easily transported by the wind and deposited on the dunes. These findings may help coastal managers and policymakers.
Storms are often related to coastal dune erosion. We found that, for specific coastal settings,...
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