Assessment of storm-induced coastal changes on a high-energy microtidal reef-fringed coast
CollegeCollege of Engineering
DepartmentDepartment of Mechanical Engineering
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This study sought to assess the storm-induced hydrodynamic and sediment transport patterns along the coast of Rincón, Puerto Rico during two storm events (Hurricane María and Winter Storm Riley). In order to assess short-term morphodynamics, detailed hydrodynamic measurements were collected for a year immediately after Hurricane María's catastrophic impact in 2017. Topographic and bathymetric profile data were also collected from November 2017 to September 2018 as part of this study. However, the collected field data did not capture the spatial patterns of the study area. Therefore, a coupled wave-current-sediment transport numerical model was implemented to better understand the storm-induced coastal dynamics responsible of sediment transport and morphological changes. The Delft3D model, developed by Deltares, helped identify and understand the coastal dynamics responsible for the morphological changes generated by Hurricane María and Winter Storm Riley. The outcomes of this study set the foundation for the development of predictive tools and machine learning technology in this field.