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Sediment dynamics over sand ridges on a tideless mid-outer continental shelf

AuthorsSimarro, Gonzalo ; Guillén, Jorge ; Puig, Pere ; Ribó, Marta ; Lo Iacono, Claudio ; Palanques, Albert ; Muñoz, Araceli; Durán, Ruth ; Acosta, Juan
KeywordsABS measurements
Intrawave bottom boundary layer
Continental shelf
Sediment resuspension
Sand ridge
Issue Date1-Mar-2015
CitationMarine Geology 361: 25-40 (2015)
AbstractA sand ridge field with crests oriented NE-SW (52°) located between 55 and 85m water depth on the Valencia continental shelf (Spain) was mapped with multibeam swath bathymetry and characterized with seismic profiling and sediment sampling. Boundary-layer hydrodynamic measurements conducted over a sand ridge at 66m depth show evidence of wave and current sediment resuspension during a major storm event with a three-year recurrence period. From the measured intrawave sediment concentration profiles it is shown that the suspended sediment time evolution is related not only to mean currents but also to the wave field. The near-bottom shear stress generated during storm conditions reached around 1N/m2 and was able to resuspend and transport sandy and muddy sediments for more than 32h. The total suspended sediment transport in a layer of 1m above the bottom was around 4000kg per meter width and directed 160°.It is argued that these sand ridges were developed in a shallow environment and there is no evidence of present-day ridge migration or morphological degradation. It is hypothesized that sediment dynamics affecting sand ridges during storms favors the maintenance of their morphology. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.
Description16 pages, 14 figures, 1 table
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.margeo.2014.12.005
Identifiersdoi: 10.1016/j.margeo.2014.12.005
issn: 0025-3227
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