Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

An Assessment of Two Models of Wave Propagation in an Estuary Protected by Breakwaters

Version 1 : Received: 26 July 2018 / Approved: 27 July 2018 / Online: 27 July 2018 (03:47:59 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Ilia, A.; O’Donnell, J. An Assessment of Two Models of Wave Propagation in an Estuary Protected by Breakwaters. J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2018, 6, 145. Ilia, A.; O’Donnell, J. An Assessment of Two Models of Wave Propagation in an Estuary Protected by Breakwaters. J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2018, 6, 145.

Journal reference: J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2018, 6, 145
DOI: 10.3390/jmse6040145

Abstract

Breakwaters influence coastal wave climate and circulation by blocking and dissipating wave energy. Accurate representation of these effects is essential to the determination of coastal circulation and wave processes. MIKE21SW and SWAN are two third-generation spectral wave models which are used widely in coastal research and engineering applications. Recent improved versions of the models are able to consider the influence of breakwater structures. In this study, we used available observations to evaluate the accuracy of model simulations of waves in New Haven Harbor, Connecticut, USA, an estuary with three detached breakwaters near the mouth. We then compare the accuracy and computational efficiency of MIKE21SW and SWAN. Both models were executed on the same unstructured triangular grid. The boundary conditions were derived from a bottom mounted ADCP on the offshore side of the breakwaters. Wind forcing was applied using data from the Central Long Island Sound buoy. We find that both models are largely consistent with observations during storms. The MIKE21SW significant wave height and wave direction simulations were slightly superior; however, SWAN is more efficient and faster due to its implementation of a fully implicit technique for time integration.

Subject Areas

wave hindcast; breakwater; harbor; estuary; SWAN; MIKE21SW; assessment

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