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Research Abstracts Online
January 2008 - March 2009

University of Minnesota Twin Cities
Institute of Technology
Department of Civil Engineering

PI: Vaughan R. Voller, Associate Fellow
Co-PI: Chris Paola

Models of Delta Building

Over half of the world’s population lives in costal areas. These areas are fragile and severe weather events often lead to serious losses of property and life. This problem is mitigated by the fact that many costal regions are experiencing significant land loss. To reverse this trend and provide protection for populated costal areas, engineering projects have been proposed to rebuild land. One notable effort is in the Mississippi Delta where diversions in the river system have been proposed to redirect sediments and construct new delta lobes.

The aim of this project is to develop models of land building process that can be used to understand how a sediment delta is gown and maintained. The first part of the project is directed at the development of computational models that couple fluid-flow and sediment transport phenomena.

The researchers are using the Linux cluster to run a shallow water code. This code will help them determine how the water distribution on the delta fan surface is influenced by channels/topography and develop a sediment transport model that can be coupled to out shallow water code. This component will then allow for a direct coupling between the flow on the delta surface and its developing topography.  

Group Member

Man Liang, Graduate Student