High-frequency sediment transport responses on a vegetated foredune

R Davidson-Arnott, B Bauer, I Walker, Patrick Hesp, J Ollerhead, C Chapman

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    90 Citations (Scopus)


    Wind flow and sand transport intensity were measured on the seaward slope of a vegetated foredune during a 16 h storm using an array of sonic anemometers and Wenglor laser particle counters. The foredune had a compound seaward slope with a wave-cut scarp about 0.5 m high separating the upper vegetated portion from the lower dune ramp, which was bare of vegetation. Wind direction veered from obliquely offshore at the start of the event to obliquely onshore during the storm peak and finally to directly onshore during the final 2 h as wind speed dropped to below threshold. Sand transport was initially inhibited by a brief period of rain at the start of the event but as the surface dried and wind speed increased sand transport was initiated over the entire seaward slope. Transport intensity was quite variable both temporally and spatially on the upper slope as a result of fluctuating wind speed and direction, but overall magnitudes were similar over the whole length. Ten-minute average transport intensity correlates strongly with mean wind speed measured at the dune crest, and there is also strong correlation between instantaneous wind speed and transport intensity measured at the same locations when the data are smoothed with a 10 s running mean. Transport on the beach for onshore winds is decoupled from that on the seaward slope above the small scarp when the wind angle is highly oblique, but for wind angles <45° from shore perpendicular some sand is transported onto the lower slope.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1227-1241
    Number of pages15
    JournalEarth Surface Processes and Landforms
    Issue number11
    Publication statusPublished - 15 Sept 2012


    • Aeolian sediment transport
    • Coastal foredune
    • Vegetated slope


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