Methods for field measurement and remote sensing of the swash zone
Swash action is the dominant process responsible for the cross-shore exchange of sediment between the subaerial and subaqueous zones, with a significant part of the littoral drift also taking place as a result of swash motions. The swash zone is the area of the beach between the inner surfzone and backbeach that is intermittently submerged and exposed by the processes of wave uprush and backwash. Given the dominant role that swash plays in the morphological evolution of a beach, it is important to understand and quantify the main processes. The extent of swash (horizontally and vertically), current velocities and suspended sediment concentrations are all parameters of interest in the study of swash processes. In situ methods of measurements in this energetic zone were instrumental in developing early understanding of swash processes, however, the field has experienced a shift towards remote sensing methods. This article outlines the emergence of high precision technologies such as video imaging and LIDAR (light detection and ranging) for the study of swash processes. Furthermore, the applicability of these methods to large-scale datasets for quantitative analysis is demonstrated.
- Staging