Author(s): Alison Raby; Ravindra Jayaratne; Henrik Bredmose; Geoff Bullock
Keywords: Breaking waves; bubble image velocimetry; coastal engineering; flow visualization and imaging; incompressible Navier–Stokes solver; laboratory studies; violent wave overtopping
Abstract: ABSTRACTTo better understand individual violent wave overtopping, of significance for coastal defence design, three breaking wave types (steep-fronted, plunging and broken) based on focused wave groups, were generated in laboratory and numerical models. High-speed video captured overtopping events and produced velocity vector maps by means of bubble image velocimetry (BIV). Results were compared with a numerical model based on a linear wave detection procedure and a two-phase incompressible Navier–Stokes-based solver. This novel approach revealed that the overtopping waves comprised an initial jet of 0.2 s duration, but dominated by quasi-steady flow. Whilst laboratory surface-elevation time-histories were highly repeatable, overtopping volume repeats were sensitive to the breaker type. Measured volumes were compared with: the numerical model (which over-predicted, but was reasonably accurate for steep-fronted waves); estimations based on BIV results (which provided very close agreement for the steep-fronted waves); and a weir-based analogy (which provided reasonable agreement, but always under-predicted).