The effect of the coastal geometry on sand bed forms generation has been investigated for a tidal dominated area. Different hypothetical geometries of coastal channels with flat bottoms and unlimited sediment availability were exposed to strong oscillatory tidal currents to simulate the interaction of hydrodynamics and the bedload sediment transport. The hypothetical geometries stand for the idealization of the principal geographic features of the Infiernillo Channel, a coastal area of the Gulf of California where sandbanks and sand waves have been observed. A depth integrated hydrodynamic-numerical model and a parameterized formula to estimate the bedload sediment transport were applied coupled with a sediment conservation equation to determine the sea bottom morphodynamics. Model predictions in the Infiernillo Channel were compared to available satellite imagery. This investigation demonstrates that a vertical integrated numerical model is able to reproduce the development of incipient sand waves that exist in the Infiernillo Channel. Incipient sandbanks and shoals were also simulated. Sand waves with wavelengths of about 200 m were calculated on the same locations where sand waves actually exist. A crucial finding of this research was to show that the geometry of a shallow water basin and the presence of tidal velocity gradients associated with abrupt changes in the coastline alignment were critical in determining the sand-bed pattern generation. We demonstrate that a vertical variation of tidal currents is not necessary to generate sand waves.
Hulscher, S.J.M.H. (1996) Tidal-Induced Large-Scale Regular Bed Form Patterns in a Three-Dimensional Shallow Water Model. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 101, 20727-20744. http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/96JC01662
Huntley, D.A., Huthnance, J.M., Collins, M.B., Liu, C.L., Nicholls, R.J. and Hewitson, C. (1993) Hydrodynamics and Sediment Dynamics of North Sea Sand Waves and Sand Banks. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society London, 343, 461-474. http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rsta.1993.0059
Gerkema, T. (1998) A Note on the Effect of Finite Stokes-Layer Thickness in a Morphodynamic Stability Problem. In: Dronkers, J. and Scheffers, M., Eds., Proceedings of 8th International Biennial Conference on Physics of Estuaries and Coastal Seas, Balkema, 387-395.
Hulscher, S.J.M.H., De Swart, H.E. and De Vriend, H.J. (1993) The Generation of Offshore Tidal Sand Banks and Sand Waves. Continental Shelf Research, 13, 1183-1204. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/0278-4343(93)90048-3
Luque, D., Robles, A., Bravo, L.C., Nava, A., Rivera, M., López, A., Barnett, R., Morales, C. and Morales D. (2008) Monitoreo ambiental del Canal del Infiernillo, Territorio Comcáac (Seri). Modelo participativo comunitario basado en el conocimiento tradicional. Golfo de California.1ra Bienal del Programa de Ordenamiento Ecológico Marino del Golfo de California. La Paz, B.C.
Merifield, P.M., Marzolf, J.E. and Lamar, D.L. (1970) Marine Sand Waves in El Infiernillo Channel, Gulf of California, Final Report for the Office of Naval Research. Washington DC. Contract No N0014-69-C-0210. Task No 388093.
Marzolf, J.E. and Merrifield, P.M. (1969) Sand Waves Produced by Tidal Currents in the Gulf of California, Sonora, Mexico. Geological Society of America, Abstracts with Programs for 1969, Pallet 7 (Annual Meeting.), 143-144.
Torre Cosio, J. and Bourillón, L. (2000) Inventario y monitoreo del canal del Infiernillo para el comanejo de los recursos marinos en el territorio Seri, Golfo de California. Conservation Internacional, México, A.C. Informe Final SNIB-CONABIO Proyecto No L179, México DF.
Montano-Ley, Y., Peraza-Vizcarra, R. and Paez-Osuna, F. (2007) The Tidal Hydrodynamics Modeling of the Topolobampo Coastal Lagoon System and the Implications for Pollutant Dispersion. Environmental Pollution, 147, 282-290.
Montano-Ley, Y., Carbajal, N. and Paez-Osuna, F. (2014) Bed Load Transport of Sediments and Morphodynamics in the Topolobampo Coastal Lagoon System, Mexico. Journal of Coastal Conservation, 18, 55-67.
Montano-Ley, Y., Carbajal, N. and Páez Osuna, F. (2015) Sediment Dynamics in a Complex Coastal Lagoon System of the Gulf of California. Journal of Coastal Conservation, 19, 295-306. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11852-015-0391-y
De Vriend, H.J., Capobianco, M., Cheshere, T., De Swart, H.E., Latteux, B. and Stive, M.J.F. (1993) Approaches to Long Term Modeling of Coastal Morphology: A Review. Coastal Engineering, 21, 225-269.
Schramkowski, G.P., Schuttelaars, H.M. and De Swart, H.E. (2002) The Effect of Geometry and Bottom Friction on Local Bed Forms in a Tidal Embayment. Continental Shelf Research, 22, 1821-1833.