Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

The future of the Wadden Sea: Does more rain prevent it from drowning?

02.04.2012
New cross-border project PACE started

The Wadden Sea of the southwestern North Sea, the world’s largest area of connected intertidal flats, has existed for several thousand years, despite a more or less steady rise of the sea level.

This has been compensated for by transport of sediments into the Wadden Sea from the adjacent offshore waters of the North Sea. There is an ongoing scientific debate about the mechanisms which cause this onshore sediment transport. Coordinated by the Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research in Warnemünde, an international consortium of scientists from the Netherlands, Germany and Denmark has now joined forces and launched the project PACE (The future of the Wadden Sea sediment fluxes: still keeping pace with sea level rise?) to investigate the new hypothesis that the sediment transport through tidal channels is triggered by salinity differences. First computer simulation studies and field observations at several points in the Wadden Sea support this new hypothesis.

The following essential questions will be answered:

1. To which extent are salinity differences between the North Sea and the Wadden Sea responsible for the net sediment transport into the Wadden Sea and how does their effect compare to known processes such as tidal asymmetries?

2. How do these transports depend on the strength of the salinity differences which may in turn be increased or decreased due to climatological changes in precipitation?

3. Will the intertidal flats in the Wadden Sea survive an accelerated sea level rise due to global warming?

The researchers from the Netherlands, Germany and Denmark will mainly apply high resolution, realistic computer simulation models for the Wadden Sea, which are well calibrated to observational data. The models will be used to answer questions such as “what happens to the sediment fluxes if the freshwater flux into the Wadden Sea increases and sea level rise is accelerated?” Focal areas of the study will be the Marsdiep-Vlie-Schiermonnikoog system in the western Dutch Wadden Sea, the waters around the island of Spiekeroog in Lower Saxony, the waters around the island of Sylt in Schleswig-Holstein and the Danish Wadden Sea north of the island of Rømø.

The project had its kick-off meeting on March 6/7 in Delmenhorst (Germany) to coordinate their research and to define the specifications of the model simulations.

The project is jointly funded by the Netherlands Organisation of Scientific Research (NWO) and the German Ministry of Research and Education (BMBF) in the framework of the Georisk part of the 1st transnational call for proposals on Bilateral Wadden Sea Research.

The participating institutes and the contact persons are:

1. Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemünde (Germany): Prof. Dr. Hans Burchard (email: hans.burchard@io-warnemuende.de, Tel.: +49-381-5197-140)

2. Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (The Netherlands): Dr. Theo Gerkema (email: gerk@nioz.nl, Tel.: +31-222-369426)

3. Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht - Centre for Materials and Coastal Research (Germany): Dr. Götz Flöser (email: goetz.floeser@hzg.de, Tel.: +49-4152-87-2345)

4. Deltares (The Netherlands): Dr. Gerben de Boer (email: gerben.deboer@deltares.nl, Tel.: +31-88-3358534)

5. DHI Water & Environment (Denmark): Dr. Ole Petersen (email: osp@dhigroup.dk, Tel.: +45-45169200)

6. University of Copenhagen, Department of Geography & Geology (Denmark): Prof. Morten Pejrup (email: mp@geo.ku.dk, Tel.: +45-353-22505)

7. AWI / Wadden Sea Station Sylt (Germany): Dr. Ragnhild Asmus (email: ragnhild.asmus@awi.de, Tel.: +49-4651- 956-4308)

Dr. Barbara Hentzsch | idw
Further information:
http://www.io-warnemuende.de

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology
22.06.2017 | Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

nachricht How reliable are shells as climate archives?
21.06.2017 | Leibniz-Zentrum für Marine Tropenforschung (ZMT)

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Equipping form with function

23.06.2017 | Information Technology

New design improves performance of flexible wearable electronics

23.06.2017 | Materials Sciences

Individualized fiber components for the world market

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>