UTFacultiesETDepartmentsCEMResearch groupsWater Engineering and ManagementResearchsalt accumulation at floodgates and salt-water intrusion in rivers

salt accumulation at floodgates and salt-water intrusion in rivers

PhD research

January 2021 - December 2025

Persons involved
Ir. Fateme Ebrahimierami (PhD student)
Prof. dr. S.J.M.H. Hulscher (Promoter)
Dr. ir. Bart Vermeulen (Co-supervisor)
Dr. ir. Vasilieos Kitsikoudis (Daily supervisor)

Funding of the project
This research is a part of the SALTISolution programme and is funded by NWO

Summary of the research
Salt-water intrusion widely occurs in estuarine areas and can be very problematic to local communities. Worldwide, there is an urgent need for accurate models for salt intrusion predictions since it is one of the most challenging and widespread environmental problems that threaten the quality and sustainability of freshwater resources.

This phenomenon can be aggravated by long-term alterations in weather patterns. On top of this, human activities increased significantly due to heavy urbanization with structural changes to the coastal areas such as deepening of estuaries or construction of gates and locks.

Therefore, the understanding of the role of anthropogenic changes on the severity and frequency of salt intrusion events is of high importance in order to get accurate predictions. For example, in Haringvliet inlet in the Rhine-Meuse Delta, the study area of this research, salt intrusion occurs during periods of low flow in the rivers and salt accumulation at floodgates can potentially exacerbate the salinization of freshwater in coastal environments.

Certain man-made structures such as floodgates that can restrict this free exchange of salt-water and freshwater in an estuary must be managed. Hence it is important to understand and quantify how much salt enters freshwater resources through gray-green infrastructures.

Salt intrusion, Salt accumulation, Floodgate, scour hole

More information
Fateme Ebahimierami
Room Horst W207
Tel. +31 53 489 4525
E-mail f.ebrahimierami@utwente.nl