Dataset Open Access

Low overtopping discharges over sea walls and breakwaters

Silva, Eunice; Sutherland, James; Harpham, Quillon

The design of seawalls and breakwaters is often required to achieve very low target overtopping discharges when these structures protect vulnerable infrastructure or activities. The balance between economically viable protection and performance requirements is often difficult to achieve without good knowledge on low overtopping. The paucity of data in this space and the higher uncertainty associated with existing methods, increases the challenge. The occurrence of low number of overtopping waves has the consequence that any test results are substantially more affected by the inherent variation of random waves, therefore more uncertain. Within the multi-institute project RECIPE under the HYDRALAB+ project, experimental studies for RECIPE Task 8.2 have generated new data on the response of seawalls, breakwaters and related coastal structures with the aim of improving future model testing. Tests by HRW have explored wave overtopping with contributions of data from UPORTO and LNEC. These physical model test results explore these issues and provide example data. The tests were successful in obtaining low to very low overtopping discharge test data. For low / very low overtopping discharges, these test data present considerable scatter relative to the latest empirical prediction. A number of repetitions were performed for wave conditions resulting in very low overtopping discharges, which illustrated the inherent uncertainty associated with low overtopping.

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