The CREST monitoring campaign started! | CREST project

The CREST monitoring campaign started!

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The CREST monitoring campaign started!

Added on 2016-07-27
Dear reader, On May 13th 2016 the first field campaign to measure aeolian sand transport was conducted in the framework of the CREST project. Researchers from KU Leuven Technology Campus Ostend, supported by VUB and Flanders Hydraulics Research set out the instrumentation.

In total, 12 Modified Wilson And Cook (MWAC) sand catchers, two sand wells, a camera system, two meteorological stations and two saltiphones were installed on the beach of Mariakerke, Ostend. At the same time, researchers and students from UGent, Dept. of Geography, performed the topographic measurements on site.

We were lucky on Friday 13th to find a windy day with a fairly constant wind, coming from the North (oblique onshore), shifting direction to the Northeast close to the dike. Measured data of moisture content, wind speed and direction, topography and aeolian sand flux were correlated.

In general, transport occurred at around 6m/s. A comparison between the intensity of wind-driven sand transport, measured with the saltiphones, and the wind speed shows a linear relationship with a high correlation, which confirms recent findings in the Netherlands. The spatial distribution covered by the sand catchers, shows that the transport rate increases with distance downwind from the intertidal zone towards the dry beach. The sand catchers close to the dike captured less sediment, which can be attributed to the deflection of the wind because of the presence of the dike.

This first trial campaign already provided interesting data. At this moment, based on the insights gained, the field campaign protocol is optimized, in order to be ready for the monthly measurements, starting from September 2016 onwards at two locations at the Belgian Coast: Mariakerke, featuring a dike and probably West-Groenendijk, featuring dunes.

Pictures of the first field campaign can be consulted online.

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