ICCE 2022

How to Cite

SUB-NAPPE AIR CAVITY PRESSURE DURING OVERFLOW OF A VERTICAL STRUCTURE. (2023). Coastal Engineering Proceedings, 37, papers.4.


Megathrust earthquakes cause tsunamis that can destroy coastal structures and damage buildings, resulting in injuries and deaths. To prevent these consequences and reduce the risk of failure of coastal structures, it is essential to understand the exact mechanism of structure failure. Sub-nappe air cavity pressure during overflow of a vertical structure, which is the main topic of this research, can increase the risk of failure of structure, but had not yet been quantified. In this research, hydraulic experiments were conducted to reveal the relation among the air cavity pressure, overtopping flowrate, and tailwater depth for aerated and non-aerated overflow cases. For the aerated case, we found that air cavity pressure is almost equal to the atmospheric pressure regardless of flowrate and downstream weir height. On the other hand, for the non-aerated case or a partially-aerated case, air cavity pressure is inversely proportional to overtopping flowrate. The relation between air cavity pressure and tailwater depth could be interpreted in different ways based on the flow condition downstream.


Arikawa, T., Sato, M., Shimosako, K., Hasegawa, I., Yeom, G.S. and Tomita, T., 2012. Failure

mechanism of Kamaishi breakwaters due to the Great East Japan earthquake tsunami. Coastal

engineering proceedings, 1(33), p.16.

Bricker, J.D., Francis, M. and Nakayama, A., 2012. Scour depths near coastal structures due to the 2011

Tohoku Tsunami. Journal of hydraulic research, 50(6), pp.637-641.

Bricker, J.D., Takagi, H. and Mitsui, J., 2013. Turbulence model effects on VOF analysis of breakwater

overtopping during the 2011 Great East Japan Tsunami. In Proceedings of the 2013 IAHR World

Congress (Vol. 10153).

BRICKER, J.D., TAKAGI, H., MAS, E., KURE, S., ADRIANO, B., YI, C. and ROEBER, V., 2014.

Spatial variation of damage due to storm surge and waves during Typhoon Haiyan in the

Philippines. 土木学会論文集 B2 (海岸工学), 70(2), pp.I_231-I_235.

Chanson, H., 1996. Air bubble entrainment in free-surface turbulent shear flows. Elsevier.

Chock, G., Robertson, I., Kriebel, D., Francis, M. and Nistor, I., 2013, June. Tohoku, Japan, earthquake

and tsunami of 2011: Performance of structures under tsunami loads. American Society of Civil


Jayaratne, R., Abimola, A., Mikami, T., Matsuba, S., Esteban, M. and Shibayama, T., 2014. Predictive

model for scour depth of coastal structure failures due to tsunamis. Coastal Engineering

Proceedings, (34), pp.56-56.

Patil, A., Mudiyanselage, S.D., Bricker, J.D., Uijttewaal, W. and Keetels, G., 2018. Effect of overflow

nappe non-aeration on tsunami breakwater failure. Coastal Engineering Proceedings, (36), pp.18-

Seed, R.B., Bea, R.G., Athanasopoulos-Zekkos, A., Boutwell, G.P., Bray, J.D., Cheung, C., Cobos-Roa,

D., Ehrensing, L., Harder Jr, L.F., Pestana, J.M. and Riemer, M.F., 2008. New Orleans and Hurricane

Katrina. II: the central region and the lower Ninth Ward. Journal of geotechnical and

geoenvironmental engineering, 134(5), pp.718-739.

Suppasri, A., Koshimura, S., Imai, K., Mas, E., Gokon, H., Muhari, A. and Imamura, F., 2012. Damage

characteristic and field survey of the 2011 Great East Japan Tsunami in Miyagi Prefecture. Coastal

Engineering Journal, 54(1), pp.1250005-1.

Suppasri, A., Latcharote, P., Bricker, J.D., Leelawat, N., Hayashi, A., Yamashita, K., Makinoshima, F.,

Roeber, V. and Imamura, F., 2016. Improvement of tsunami countermeasures based on lessons from

The 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami—situation after five years. Coastal

Engineering Journal, 58(4), pp.1640011-1.

Takagi, H., 2015. Method for quick assessment of caisson breakwater failure due to Tsunamis:

Retrospective analysis of data from the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami. Coastal

Engineering Journal, 57(3), pp.1550012-1.

Takagi, H. and Bricker, J.D., 2015. Breakwater damage and the effect of breakwaters on mitigation of

inundation extent during tsunamis: Case study of the 2011 Great East Japan earthquake and tsunami.

In Handbook of coastal disaster mitigation for engineers and planners (pp. 363-383). Butterworth-


Takahashi, S., 2002. Design of vertical breakwaters. PHRI reference document nr. 34.

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Copyright (c) 2023 Taeksang Kim, Julien Malherbe, Sirawit Shimpalee, Jeremy Bricker