Field measurements show rough fore reefs with spurs and grooves can dissipate more wave energy than the reef crest

Duce, S., Vila-Concejo, A., McCarroll, R.J., Yiu, B., Perris, L.A., and Webster, J.M. (2022) Field measurements show rough fore reefs with spurs and grooves can dissipate more wave energy than the reef crest. Geomorphology, 413. 108365.

[img] PDF (Publisher Accepted Version) - Published Version
Restricted to Repository staff only

View at Publisher Website:


Coral reefs are widely recognized as effective dissipaters of wave energy. Spurs and grooves (SAG) are common features of fore reefs worldwide and are thought to be particularly efficient at dissipating wave energy. However, very few studies have collected in-situ hydrodynamic data to verify this and understand SAG interactions with hydrodynamic forces. We present in-situ wave data from contrasting SAG sites at Moorea, French Polynesia, and One Tree Reef in the southern Great Barrier Reef, Australia. We measured high rates of wave energy dissipation (up to 0.1 kW/m(2)) across the SAG zone. Interestingly, under the modal conditions measured, the SAG zones often dissipated wave energy at higher rates than the adjacent reef crest/flat zone. Rates of dissipation were the greatest at sites with high live coral cover in mesotidal environments (i.e., One Tree Reef sites), suggesting the structural complexity of live corals may increase bed friction and that tidal currents may also contribute to dissipation. Correlations between measured dissipation, wave height and depth allowed us to suggest that the SAG zone dissipates more energy under high wave conditions at low tides, while the reef crest/flat dissipates more energy at high tides under small wave conditions. Further study is required to better understand and model the hydrodynamics of SAG zones and the important role they play in reef dynamics and coastal protection.

Item ID: 75708
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1872-695X
Keywords: Coral reef hydrodynamics, Wave energy dissipation, Spurs and grooves, Great Barrier Reef
Copyright Information: © 2022 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved
Funders: Australian Research Council
Projects and Grants: FT100100215
Research Data:
Date Deposited: 10 Aug 2022 07:42
FoR Codes: 37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3709 Physical geography and environmental geoscience > 370901 Geomorphology and earth surface processes @ 50%
37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3708 Oceanography > 370803 Physical oceanography @ 50%
SEO Codes: 18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1805 Marine systems and management > 180506 Oceanic processes (excl. in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean) @ 70%
28 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 2801 Expanding knowledge > 280111 Expanding knowledge in the environmental sciences @ 30%
Downloads: Total: 1
More Statistics

Actions (Repository Staff Only)

Item Control Page Item Control Page