In the Deltares Delta flume, 25 scientists from several European universities are carrying out research on the erosion of sandy beaches with changing groundwater levels and under various wave conditions.
Especially for this study, a sandy beach of 20 meters wide with a further 60 meters under water, was reconstructed in the Delta flume. A large amount of measuring equipment was placed in the sand, to facilitate accurate data acquisition.
Gerd Masselink, professor at Plymouth University and project manager, is enthusiastic about the Delta flume: “By reconstructing a sandy beach we can vary the groundwater levels and determine the wave conditions ourselves. With this unique equipment, we can observe accurately, almost per grain, what the effect is on the sand.”
The scientists came to Deltares via the European programme HYDRALAB. This programme aims to make European water research facilities available to scientists who do not otherwise have access to them. Apart from Deltares, some other research institutes with large experimental facilities are also involved in the programme.
Dredging Today Staff, July 2, 2012; Image: deltares