Welcome to the website of the Department of Hydraulic Engineering of the Faculty of Civil Engineering and Geosciences of Delft University of Technology.
We have designed this website to inform and facilitate current students, prospective students, alumni, scientists, practitioners, media, colleagues and our staff on our field of focus. Our homepage offers access to section-related information that we control and update, to our direct "Delft" environment and it offers a login to our staff.
06 April 2023
Coastal changes not only caused by wind and waves, but also by people
Our coast protects us from the water; it is necessary understand its dynamic processes and to retain the sand at the coast. Natural influences such as wind and waves are constantly changing the coastline. Another important process affecting the coastline is often overlooked: human activity. To investigate this, Roderik Lindenbergh of TU Delft receives a grant from the NWO's Open Technology Programme for the AdaptCoast project.
13 March 2023
Dutch bridges are stronger than assumed
Most concrete bridges on our highways have been there for more than sixty years. They tirelessly carry heavily loaded trucks. How long can we still rely on these bridges? Yuguang Yang and his colleagues made precise replicas of existing bridge parts. Last week in the lab at TU Delft, they loaded one of the replicas till collapsing: how many trucks can the bridge ultimately carry? The first impression from the tests turned out to be positive; the experiments suggest that the bridges may be stronger than initially thought. Some of bridges can hopefully last a while and do not need to be strengthened or replaced yet.
24 February 2023
16 million to keep the Dutch delta livable - even as it changes
Deltas and coastal plains are attractive places to live: fertile, flat, and open to the sea. These lowlands are, however, also vulnerable to climate change and sea-level rise. To better predict how deltas develop in the future, a thorough understanding is needed of biogeomorphology- how organisms, currents, waves, water, and sand discharge shape the delta-landscape. It was announced today that Δ-ENIGMA, a project focusing on this formation of the delta landscape, is one of the projects that will be funded from the National Roadmap for Large-Scale Research Infrastructure (LSRI) call of the Dutch Research Counsil (NWO).
Sweet solutions to a salty problem
Some sixty kilometres, all the way up to Gouda, that’s how far inland the Rotterdam Waterway has been carrying salty North Sea water over the last few years. Salt intrusion in Dutch rivers is a growing problem for the country’s drinking water supply and agriculture, not only in the Dutch delta but in deltas worldwide. Julie Pietrzak is trying to find better ways of predicting and combating the problem.
Counting grains of sand to understand coastal dunes
The Dutch coastline is continually changing. Coastal engineer Sierd de Vries is using small ventilators, home-made wind tunnels, drones, jet skis and laser scanners to gain an insight into the development of coastal areas and dune formation. He can often be found sitting close to the Sand Motor counting grains of sand. It’s all in aid of providing more accurate predictions of the long-term changes affecting the coastal landscape.
Delft model protects wind turbines from risks posed by sea ice
Researcher Hayo Hendrikse (CEG) has developed a new model that gives accurate calculations of the effects of sea ice on offshore structures, such as wind turbines and oil and gas platforms. It turns out that ice causes less wear and tear in these structures than was previously assumed. Thanks to a successful partnership with Siemens Gamesa, Hendrikse's model is now being used in the construction of new offshore wind farms.
Into the mud to help nature
Intertidal flats: you might know them from the Wadden Sea area, but they can also be found in the south-western region of the Netherlands. An intertidal flat is an area that is underwater at high tide and above water at low tide, explains De Vet. “The water can rise or fall by five metres within six hours. At low tide, this creates small islands and strips along the coast (tidal flats)”. Intertidal flats are of great ecological value. The lugworms, cockles and crabs living in these areas make them an important pit stop for migratory birds.
Can sandbanks save mangrove forests?
Waking up early and going into the field on a small fishermen's boat, while the sun is rising behind volcano tops. That's how days started for PhD student Silke Tas during her two month fieldwork in Indonesia. The rest of her days were less idyllic: they consisted mostly of treading through the mud to get the right measurements for her research. She studies the workings of coastal sandbanks that give a chance to mangrove forests to restore, so that the forests can, in turn, prevent coast erosion.
Waiting for the perfect storm
For months hydraulic engineer Patrick Oosterlo has been waiting for a heavy storm. One that can truly test his equipment that was installed in and on a dike on the coast of the eastern Wadden Sea. He needs high waves and strong winds to decide: is this dike high enough?