SPH modeling of dynamic impact of tsunami bore on bridge piers

Zhangping Wei*, Robert A. Dalrymple, Alexis Hérault, Giuseppe Bilotta, Eugenio Rustico, Harry Yeh

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

88 Scopus citations


The Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) method is applied to investigate the impact of a tsunami bore on simplified bridge piers in this study. This work was motivated by observations of bridge damage during several recent tsunami events, and its aim is to further the understanding of the dynamic interaction between a tsunami bore and a bridge pier. This study is carried out by simulating a well-conducted physical experiment on a tsunami bore impingement on vertical columns with an SPH model, GPUSPH. The influences of bridge pier shape and orientation on free surface evolution and hydrodynamic loading are carefully examined. Furthermore, the unsteady flow field that is around and in the wake of the bridge pier is analyzed. Finally, GPUSPH is applied to explore the hydrodynamic force caused by the bridge pier blockage, the wave impact on structures, and the bed shear stress around a bridge pier due to a strong tsunami bore.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)26-42
Number of pages17
JournalCoastal Engineering
StatePublished - Oct 1 2015


  • Bridge piers
  • Hydrodynamic force
  • Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics
  • Tsunami bore
  • Wave-structure interaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Ocean Engineering


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