Sediment Transport Prediction in a Tidal Inlet Using a Numerical Model: Application to Stony Brook Harbor, Long Island, New York, USA


  • Gary A. Zarillo
  • Moon-Jin Park


Sediment transport, tidal inlet, numerical model, Long Island, New York


Acquisition of extensive current measurements in tide dominated environments in order to predict sediment transport is difficult and expensive. In addition, instantaneous transport rates predicted from different sediment transport equations often disagree by several orders of magnitude. Therefore, a numerical model was applied to a shallow inlet-basin system in order to make long-term predictions of currents and bed shear needed to integrate instantaneous sediment transport predictions and provide realistic estimates of net transport patterns. After calibration of the model, good agreement between observed and predicted tides and currents was obtained. Five empirical sediment transport equations were then coupled to the numerical model in order to compare the rang-e of predicted sediment transport rates within the study area. The transport rates predicted from the five different equations integrated over two spring-neap cycles result in largely flood-directed net sediment transport rates that are within one order of magnitude. The predicted net sediment transport pattern agrees well with observed conditions showing convergence of transport in shoaling- areas and divergence in erosional areas.

Author Biographies

Gary A. Zarillo

Moon-Jin Park