Foredune accretion under offshore winds
Cooper, J. Andrew G.
Jackson, Derek W. T.
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Lynch, K., Jackson, D.W.T. and Cooper, J.A.G., 2009. Foredune accretion under offshore winds. Geomorphology, 105(1-2): 139-146.
Experiments carried out at Magilligan Strand on the north coast of Ireland suggest that topographic steering of offshore winds is an important facet of the aeolian sediment transport system at this location. A five-day study (18-22 June 2005) investigated the pattern of airflow over the foredune while simultaneously collecting data on sediment flux. A simple instrument setup was used to characterise the airflow: a sonic anemometer was placed at the dune crest, with another on the mid-beach. Horizontal traps, electronic and integrating, measured sediment flux on the supra-tidal beach. Results show that offshore wind flow deviated from its original direction in the lee of the dune (seaward of foredune). The change in direction was not a simple steering of flow to a singular new direction, but rather flow separation resulting in turbulent multidirectional flow ¿ including reversal. Traps located at the foot of the dune scarp recorded sediment transport during events forced by offshore winds. Data from sediment traps, wind and observational evidence have been used to argue that sedimentation was occurring in this zone. When budgeting for sediment movement within beach-dune systems it is important to take into account the effect of secondary airflow patterns during offshore winds and their role in constructive processes of foredune formation, particularly in post-storm recovery.