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Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences

Coastal Processes and Fine Sediment Transport

earth and environmental sciences

Ongoing research in the Coastal Processes Laboratory pertains to sediment transport in coastal environments with the goal of understanding how physical processes associated with rivers, waves, tides and currents move sediment, transform the coasts, and deposit sediment in the marine environment. Past and present research involves investigation of fine-sediment transport in estuarine and near shore settings. Current study areas include the Atchafalaya River, LA, and shallow shelf of the Gulf of Mexico; the Gulf of Lions, France; and the Petitcodiac River, Canada. To better understand coastal processes and to evaluate sediment-transport models, we use a wide range of instrumentation for simultaneous measurements of the flow, water properties and suspended sediment. We try to understand the basic physics of a system and then make careful observations in the field, often developing new instrumentation to accomplish this, and use the combination of models and observations to characterize sedimentation in coastal settings.