Modelling of sand transport under wave-generated sheet flows with a RANS diffusion model

Wael Hassan, Jan S. Ribberink

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


A 1DV-RANS diffusion model is used to study sand transport processes in oscillatory flat-bed/sheet flow conditions. The central aim is the verification of the model with laboratory data and to identify processes controlling the magnitude and direction (‘onshore’/‘offshore’) of the net time-averaged sand transport. The model is verified with a large series of measured net sand transport rates, as collected in different wave tunnels for a range of wave-current conditions and grain sizes. Although not all sheet flow details are represented in the 1DV-model, it is shown that the model is able to give a correct representation of the observed trends in the data with respect to the influence of the velocity, wave period and grain diameter. Also detailed mean sediment flux profiles in the sheet flow layer are well reproduced by the model, including the direction change from ‘onshore’ to ‘offshore’ due to a difference in grain size from 0.34 mm (medium sand) to 0.13 mm (fine sand). A model sensitivity study with a selected series of net transport data shows that the stirring height of the suspended sediment εs/ws strongly controls the magnitude and direction of the net sediment transport. Inclusion of both hindered settling and density stratification appears to be necessary to correctly represent the sand fluxes for waves alone and for waves + a superimposed current. The best agreement with a large dataset of net transport measurements is obtained with the 1DV-RANS model in its original settings using a Prandtl–Schmidt number σρ = 0.5.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-29
JournalCoastal engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2010


  • Sediment transport
  • Sand models
  • Sheet flow
  • Uniform sand
  • IR-73854
  • METIS-261465
  • Waves

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Modelling of sand transport under wave-generated sheet flows with a RANS diffusion model'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this