Hydrodynamic Modelling of Wave Overtopping over a Block-Covered Flood Defence

Luuk Barendse*, Vera M. van Bergeijk, Weiqiu Chen, Jord J. Warmink, Aroen Mughal, Dorian Hill, Suzanne J.M.H. Hulscher

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
95 Downloads (Pure)


Wave overtopping can cause erosion on the landward slope due to high flow velocities and turbulence that cause high stresses on the cover. Innovative block revetments such as Grassblocks protect the subsoil of the dike against erosion. The blocks are permeable, which reduces the flow velocity and the pressures along the landward slope. The performance of these blocks is assessed in physical tests, which provides insights into the stability of the blocks. However, such experiments are expensive and accurate measurements are difficult due to highly turbulent conditions. Therefore, the goal of this study is to determine the hydrodynamic conditions at the dike cover caused by the wave run-up on the seaward slope and by the overtopping flow over the crest and landward slope. The geometry and wave conditions from the physical test at the Deltares Delta flume are implemented in an OpenFOAM® numerical model. Using the porousWaveFoam solver, a porous layer on the crest and landward slope is implemented, where the flow resistance of this porous layer largely depends on the resistance coefficients α [-] and β [-]. The numerical model is calibrated based on resistance coefficients as introduced earlier in the literature, which showed that the resistance coefficients of α=500 and β=2.0 performed best for the peak flow velocities and the peak pressures. The numerical model is evaluated by using these resistance coefficients in other time series of the physical tests. The evaluated model is then used to determine the hydrodynamic conditions on the landward slope, which showed that the pressure was the most influential hydrodynamic condition at the time of failure. Finally, the model showed that a porosity of n=0.6 and the porous layer thickness η=36mm reduced the peak pressure the most.
Original languageEnglish
Article number89
JournalJournal of marine science and engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jan 2022


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