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Observation and numerical modeling of tidal dune dynamics

Abstract : Tidal sand dune dynamics is observed for two tidal cycles in the Arcachon tidal inlet, southwest France. An array of instruments is deployed to measure bathymetric and current variations along dune profiles. Based on the measurements, dune crest horizontal and vertical displacements are quantified and show important dynamics in phase with tidal currents. We observed superimposed ripples on the dune stoss side and front, migrating and changing polarity as tidal currents reverse. A 2D RANS numerical model is used to simulate the morphodynamic evolution of a flat non-cohesive sand bed submitted to a tidal current. The model reproduces the bed evolution until a field of sand bedforms is obtained that are comparable with observed superimposed ripples in terms of geometrical dimensions and dynamics. The model is then applied to simulate the dynamics of a field of large sand dunes of similar size as the dunes observed in situ. In both cases, simulation results compare well with measurements qualitatively and quantitatively. This research allows for a better understanding of tidal sand dune and superimposed ripple morphodynamics and opens new perspectives for the use of numerical models to predict their evolution.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, May 25, 2022 - 3:08:20 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, May 26, 2022 - 3:48:04 AM

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Arnaud Doré, Philippe Bonneton, Vincent Marieu, Thierry Garlan. Observation and numerical modeling of tidal dune dynamics. Ocean Dynamics, 2018, 68, pp.589-602. ⟨10.1007/s10236-018-1141-0⟩. ⟨insu-03678718⟩

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