Tidal Flow Modelling
Environmental Impact Assessments can require the study of before and after conditions in tidally affected areas. In many studies, field data is used to assess existing conditions and the results of numerical modelling are used to assess conditions after modification (so that the relative impact of developments and other changes can be estimated).
A comprehensive data set is usually required for sediment or pollutant transport studies, and the most cost effective way of generating this information can be from a Tidal Flow Model. In such a model, the natural change in tidal elevations are used to “drive” flow through the area of interest and the tidal model predicts the resulting currents and water surface levels. The model results are then calibrated with and validated against, appropriate field data to support options investigations.
In developing a tidal flow simulation, bathymetry and topographic data are used to create a surface model. This serves as the basic input on which the tidal simulations are carried out. As required, subsequent “process” models for sediment transport and pollutant dispersion can also be used in the analysis and the results of these simulations can then be exported for animation or integration into spatial/temporal GIS systems for analysis. See our Data Analysis page for an example of this use of CFD and GIS technology integration.