Ocean Dynamics

, Volume 62, Issue 1, pp 123–137

Coastal vulnerability assessment based on video wave run-up observations at a mesotidal, steep-sloped beach

  • Michalis Ioannis Vousdoukas
  • Dagmara Wziatek
  • Luis Pedro Almeida

DOI: 10.1007/s10236-011-0480-x

Cite this article as:
Vousdoukas, M.I., Wziatek, D. & Almeida, L.P. Ocean Dynamics (2012) 62: 123. doi:10.1007/s10236-011-0480-x
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Maritime Rapid Environmental Assessment


Coastal imagery obtained from a coastal video monitoring station installed at Faro Beach, S. Portugal, was combined with topographic data from 40 surveys to generate a total of 456 timestack images. The timestack images were processed in an open-access, freely available graphical user interface (GUI) software, developed to extract and process time series of the cross-shore position of the swash extrema. The generated dataset of 2% wave run-up exceedence values R2 was used to form empirical formulas, using as input typical hydrodynamic and coastal morphological parameters, generating a best-fit case RMS error of 0.39 m. The R2 prediction capacity was improved when the shore-normal wind speed component and/or the tidal elevation ηtide were included in the parameterizations, further reducing the RMS errors to 0.364 m. Introducing the tidal level appeared to allow a more accurate representation of the increased wave energy dissipation during low tides, while the negative trend between R2 and the shore-normal wind speed component is probably related to the wind effect on wave breaking. The ratio of the infragravity-to-incident frequency energy contributions to the total swash spectra was in general lower than the ones reported in the literature Einfra/Einci > 0.8, since low-frequency contributions at the steep, reflective Faro Beach become more significant mainly during storm conditions. An additional parameterization for the total run-up elevation was derived considering only 222 measurements for which ηtotal,2 exceeded 2 m above MSL and the best-fit case resulted in RMS error of 0.41 m. The equation was applied to predict overwash along Faro Beach for four extreme storm scenarios and the predicted overwash beach sections, corresponded to a percentage of the total length ranging from 36% to 75%.


Wave run-up Beach dynamics Swash zone Nearshore waves Video imaging of waves Image processing 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michalis Ioannis Vousdoukas
    • 1
    • 2
  • Dagmara Wziatek
    • 3
  • Luis Pedro Almeida
    • 2
  1. 1.Forschungszentrum KüsteHannoverGermany
  2. 2.CIMAUniversity of AlgarveFaroPortugal
  3. 3.Leibniz University HannoverHannoverGermany

Personalised recommendations