ICCE 2012 Cover Image


composite sand-gravel beaches
cross-shore beach morphodynamics
beach profiles
Milford-on-Sea Beach
Narrabeen Beach

How to Cite

Karunarathna, H., Horrillo-Caraballo, J., Ranasinghe, R., Short, A., & Reeve, D. (2012). AN ANALYSIS OF CROSS-SHORE PROFILE EVOLUTION OF A SAND AND A COMPOSITE SAND-GRAVEL BEACHES. Coastal Engineering Proceedings, 1(33), sediment.18.


In this paper, cross-shore morphodynamic evolution of a sand and sand-gravel composite beach, are compared and contrasted used historic surveys of beach profiles. The differential behavior of cross-shore morphodynamics at a range of time scales covering event-scale dynamics up to intra-annual scale variability are investigated and discussed. The application of equilibrium concept to both beach types is explored through Dean's equilibrium profile and Vellinga's beach erosion profile. Variability of cross-shore profile dynamics are quantified and discussed through bulk statistical analysis. Multi-scale morphodynamic trends are determined using Empirical Orthogonal Eigenfunction (EOF) analysis. The above analysis enables to recognise failure mechanism of each beach type during a storm.


Alegria-Arzaburu, A.R., Pedrozo-Acuna, A., Horrillo-Caraballo, J.M., Masselink, G. and Reeve, D.E., 2010. Determination of wave-shoreline dynamics of a macrotidal gravel beach using Canonical Correlation Analysis, Coastal Engineering, Vol. 57, 290-303.

Baldock, T. E., Holmes, P. and Horn, D.P., 1999. Low frequency swash motion induced by wave grouping, Coastal Engineering, 36, pp. 197-222.

Bradbury A.P. and Powell K.A., 1992. The short term profile response of shingle spits to storm wave action. Proc. 23rd International Conf. on Coastal Engineering, 2694-2707.

Brunn, P., 1954. Coast erosion and development of beach profiles, Technical Memorandum No. 44, beach Erosion Board.

Carr, A.P., 1983. Shingle beaches: Aspects of their structure and stability. Shoreline Protection. Proceedings of Shore Protection, A conference organised by the Institution of Civil Engineers, University of Southampton, Thomas Telford, 69-76.

Carter, R.W.G. and Orford, J.D., 1984. Coarse clastic barrier beaches: a discussion of the distinctive dynamic and morphosedimentary characteristics, Marine Geology, Vol. 60, pp. 377-389.

Carter, J.D., 1986. Discussion: Gravel beach profile characterisation and discrimination, Journal of Coastal Research, Vol. 1(2), 129-139.

Carter, R.W.G. and Orford, J.D., 1993. The morphodynamics of coarse clastic barriers and beaches: a short and long term perspective, J. Coastal Res., Vol.15, 158-179.

Chadwick, A. J., Karunarathna, H., Gehrels, R, Massey, A. C.,O'Brien, D., Dales, D., 2005. A New Analysis of the Slapton Barrier Beach System. Maritime Engineering 158, 4, 147-161

Dean, R.G., 1977. Equilibrium beach profiles, US, Atlantic and Gulf Coasts, Department of Civil Engineering Ocean Engineering Report No. 12, University of Delaware, Delaware.

Dean, R.G., 1991. Equilibrium beach profiles: Characteristics and applications, Journal of Coastal Research, Vol. 7(1), 53-84.

Ivamy, M.C. and Kench, P.S., 2006. Hydrodynamic and morphological adjustment of a mixed sand and gravel beach, Torere, Bay of Plenty, New Zealand, Marine Geology, Vol. 228, 137-152.

Karunarathna, H., Chadwick, A.J. and Lawrence, J., 2005. Numerical Experiments of Swash Oscillations on Steep and Gentle Beaches, Coastal Engineering, Vol. 52, 497-511.

Kirk, R.M., 1980. Mixed sand and gravel beaches: Morphology, processes and sediments, Progress in Physical Geography, Vol.4, 189-210.

Kroon, A., Larson, M., Moller, I., Yokoki, H., Rozynski, G. Cox, J. and Larroude, P., 2008. Statistical analysis of coastal morphological data sets over seasonal to decadal time scales, Coastal Engineering, Vol. 55, 581-600.

Larson, M. and Kraus, N.C., 1994. Temporal and spatial scales of beach profile change, Duck, North Carolina, Marine Geology, Vol. 117, 75-94.

Larson, M., Capobianco, M., Jensen, H., Rozyanki, G., Southgate, H.N., Stive, M., Wijnberg, K.M. and Hulscher, S., 2003. Analysis and modelling of field data on coastal morphological evolution over yearly and decadal time scales, Part 1: Background and linear techniques, Journal of Coastal Research, Vol. 19(4), 760-775.

Martìn-Grandes, I., Hughes, J., Simmonds, D.J., Chadwick, A.J. & Reeve, D.E., 2009. Novel methodology for one line model calibration using impoundment on mixed beach, Proc Coastal Dynamics 2009. DOI: 10.1142/9789814282475_0106

Masselink, G. Russell, P., Blenkinsopp, C. and Turner, I., 2010. Swash zone sediment transport, step dynamics and morphological response on a gravel beach, Marine Geology, Vol. 274, 50-68.

McLean, R F and Kirk, R. M., 1969. Relationship between grain size, size-sorting, and foreshore slope on mixed sand- shingle beaches. New Zealand Journal Geology Geophysics, 12, 138-155.

Moore, B.D., 1982. Beach profile evolution in response to change in water level and wave height, Master's Thesis, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Delaware, pp.

Pilkey, O.H., Young, R.S., Riggs, S.R., Smith, A.W. and Pilkey, W.D., 1993. The concept of shore profile of equilibrium: A critical review, J. Coastal Research, Vol. 9(1), 255-278.

Pontee, N.I., Pye, K. and Blott, S.J., 2004. Morphodynamic behaviour and sedimentary variation of mixed sand and gravel beaches, Suffolk, UK, Journal of Coastal Research, Vol. 20(1), pp. 256-276.[256:MBASVO]2.0.CO;2

Pruszak, Z., 1993. The analysis of beach profile changes using Dean's method and empirical orthogonal functions, Coastal Engineering, Vol. 19, 245-261.

Ranasinghe, R., McLoughlin, R., Short, A. and Symonds, G., 2004. The Southern Oscillation Index, wave climate and beach rotation, Marine Geology, Vol. 204, 273-287.

Reeve, D.E., Li, B. & Thurston, N., 2001. "Eigenfunction analysis of decadal fluctuations in sandbank morphology at Great Yarmouth", Journal of Coastal Research, 17(2), 371-382.

Reeve, D.E., Horrillo-Caraballo, J.M. and Magar, V., 2008. Statistical Analysis and Forecasts of Long-term Sandbank Evolution at Great Yarmouth, UK, Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, Vol. 79, 387-399.

Standing Conference on Problems Associated with the Coastline - SCOPAC, 2003. Sediment Transport Study. Hengistbury Head to Hurst Spit (

Short, A. D. and Trenaman, N., 1992. Wave climate of the Sydney region, Aust. J. Mar. Freshw. Res., Vol. 42, 765-791.

Short, A.D. and Wright, L.D., 1981. Beach systems of the Sydney region, Australian Geographer, Vol. 15, 8-16.

Short, A.D. and Trembanis, A.C., 2004. Decadal scale patterns in beach oscillation and rotation Narrabeen beach, Australia-Time series, PCA and Wavelet Analysis, Journal of Coastal Research, Vol. 20(2), 523-532.[0523:DSPIBO]2.0.CO;2

Short, A.D., 1985. Rip current type, spacing and persistence, Narrabeen beach, Australia, Marine Geology, Vol. 65, pp. 47-71.

Sunamura, T. and Horikawa, K., 1974. Two dimensional beach transformation due to waves, Proc. 14th Int. Conference in Coastal Engineering, 920-938.

Swart, D.H., 1974. A schematisation of onshore-offshore transport, Proc. 14th Int. Conference in Coastal Engineering, 884-900.

Vellinga, P., 1983. Predictive computational model for beach and dune erosion during storm surges, Proc. Coastal Structures, ASCE, Washington D.C.

Vellinga, P., 1984. A tentative description of a universal erosion profile for sandy beaches and rock beaches. Coastal Engineering, Volume 8, Issue 2, 177-188.

Wijnberg, K.M. and Terwindt, J.H.J., 1995. Extracting decadal morphological behaviour from high-resolution, long-term bathymetric surveys along the Holland coast using eigenfunction analysis, Marine Geology, Vol.126, 301-330.

Winant, C.D., Inman, D. and Nordstrom, C.E., 1975. Description of seasonal beach changes using Empirical Eigenfunctions, Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol. 80 (15), 1979-1986.

Authors retain copyright and grant the Proceedings right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this Proceedings.