Journal article

A first evaluation of the contribution of aeolian sand transport to lagoon island accretion in the Maldives

MJ Hilton, DR Borrie, TM Konlechner, SJ Wakes, TP Lane, PS Kench, DM Kennedy, Mohamed Aslam

Aeolian Research | Elsevier | Published : 2019


Aeolian sedimentation and dune development have not been reported from coral atolls at equatorial latitudes. This study presents high-frequency measurements of incident and near surface wind flow and aeolian sand transport on a lagoon sand cay (Maaodegalaa) in the Maldives. Sonic anemometers and Wenglor™ particle counters were operated at 1 Hz for 8 days during the Iruvai monsoon in February 2018. Sand traps were deployed to estimate sand flux and island topography and vegetation cover were surveyed using UAV (un-manned aerial vehicle) photogrammetry and a laser level (in 2017 and 2018). Flow over beach scarps is 10 modelled using computational fluid dynamics. Maaodegalaa sand cay reaches ..

View full abstract


Funding Acknowledgements

Permission to conduct research in the Republic of the Maldives was kindly granted by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries. Mr Chris Garden executed the cartography with patience and care. The first author thanks the School of Geography, University of Melbourne, for hospitality and laboratory facilities during his recent sabbatical during which this manuscript was prepared. The University of Otago provided financial support for fieldwork in the Maldives in 2017 and 2018. Finally, shukuriyaa to Mr Ali Zuhair of the Small Island Research Station, Fares-maathodaa, South Huvadhoo Atoll, for his technical and field support.