Metronome Tidal Research Facility Opens in Utrecht

The Utrecht University together with the research institute Deltares officially opened the Metronome tidal research facility on 12 January in the Netherlands. 

To create reversing tidal flow and sediment transport on scale, professor Maarten Kleinhans of the university created a twenty by three meters flume, tilting back and forth every half minute at a small slope.

This tilting-principle simulates ebb and flood in a setup of a 1:1000 scaled river mouth with sand and water, enabling the study of the changing river patterns.

Every minute in the Metronome corresponds to a day in reality. The changes in the landscapes are followed with cameras, and the images are used to improve insights and computer models.

After the examination of the natural development of river mouths, the facility will also be used to study interventions, such as deepening of waterways, as well as future scenarios, such as the long-term effects of sea level rise.

The Metronome tidal facility was officially opened by dean of the university´s Faculty of Geosciences, Pete Hoekstra, and managing director of research institute Deltares, Maarten Smits.