Observations of nearbed turbulence over mobile bedforms in combined, collinear wave-current flows

Kassem, H. and Thompson, C. and Amos, C. and Townend, I. and Todd, D. and Whitehouse, R.J.S. and Chellew, E. (2020) Observations of nearbed turbulence over mobile bedforms in combined, collinear wave-current flows. Water, 12.

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.3390/w12123515


Collinear wave-current shear interactions are often assumed to be the same for currents following or opposing the direction of regular wave propagation; with momentum and mass exchanges restricted to the thin oscillating boundary layer (zero-flux condition) and enhanced but equal wave-averaged bed shear stresses. To examine these assumptions, a prototype-scale experiment investigated the nature of turbulent exchanges in flows with currents aligned to, and opposing, wave propagation over a mobile sandy bed. Estimated mean and maximum stresses from measurements above the bed exceeded predictions by models of bed shear stress subscribing to the assumptions above, suggesting the combined boundary layer is larger than predicted by theory. The core flow experiences upward turbulent fluxes in aligned flows, coupled with sediment entrainment by vortex shedding at flow reversal, whilst downward fluxes of eddies generated by the core flow, and strong adverse shear can enhance near-bed mass transport, in opposing currents. Current-aligned coherent structures contribute significantly to the stress and energy dissipation, and display characteristics of wall-attached eddies formed by the pairing of counter-rotating vortices. These preliminary findings suggest a notable difference in wave-following and wave-opposing wave-current interactions, and highlight the need to account for intermittent momentum-exchanges in predicting stress, boundary layer thickness and sediment transport.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Open Access
Subjects: Maritime > General
Divisions: Maritime
Depositing User: Helen Stevenson
Date Deposited: 14 Dec 2020 16:16
Last Modified: 03 Mar 2021 13:57
URI: http://eprints.hrwallingford.com/id/eprint/1455

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