Thesis: Wave transformation in fringing reef environments
My research focuses on the development of tools to predict wave transformation and dissipation in coral reef environments. Reef systems act as natural barriers that protect much of the world’s coastline from storm waves and tsunamis. Proper modelling of wave transformation and dissipation is particularly critical to accurately forecast the coastal impacts of extreme waves, as well as to quantify the response to sea-level rise. Conventional nearshore wave models have primarily (or exclusively) been developed, calibrated, and tested on sandy beaches with mild-slopes. This raises questions about the suitability of these beach models to simulate analogous processes in reef systems, given that reefs have much more complex morphologies and extreme slopes. The aim of my research is to assess and improve upon the capacity of existing tools to predict wave transformation and dissipation in coral reef environments.
Why my research is important
This research will improve our ability to predict wave transformation and dissipation in coral reef environments. Accurate predictions of wave transformation and dissipation are crucial to our understanding of coastal environments. From a risk-management perspective, my research will improve our ability to provide early warnings of coastal inundation and inform future development decisions.