Comprehensive study of the sand spit evolution at tidal inlets in the central coast of Vietnam

Nguyen Quang Duc Anh, Hitoshi Tanaka, Ho Sy Tam, Nguyen Xuan Tinh, Tran Thanh Tung, Nguyen Trung Viet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Tidal inlets along the central coast of Vietnam are located in a microtidal, wave-dominated coastal environment. In addition, the Vietnam coast is highly influenced by the seasonal monsoon regime, which is characterized by large northeast waves from October to March and calm southeast waves from April to September every year. Consequently, the tidal inlet entrance morphologies often suffer from a dynamic seasonal evolution due to distinct differences in the direction of wave-induced longshore sediment transport (LST) between the two monsoon seasons. The migration or closure of tidal inlets causes a lot of problems for socio-economic development in the region since these are the main reasons leading to an increase in the risk of coastal flooding and the obstruction of navigation. This paper presents a comprehensive study of the morphological evolutions of natural tidal inlets on the central coast of Vietnam using long-term remote sensing data sets and by the Delft3D numerical model. Surprisingly, the estimated LST rates from the former method are in an order of magnitude agreement with the results from the latter one for all of the areas in this study. Based on the conservation equation for sand and comprehensive data collection, a new simple empirical formula for predicting the sand spit elongation rate as a function of the sand spit width is developed. Although the breaching of sand spit might happen during an extreme flood event at some tidal inlets, the growth rate of the spit before and after the breaching is almost unchanged. These findings are very useful information for supporting the local coastal authorities to find better management solutions in terms of sustainable development.

Original languageEnglish
Article number722
JournalJournal of Marine Science and Engineering
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Sept


  • Central coast of Vietnam
  • Delft3D
  • Image analysis
  • Inlet migration
  • Longshore sediment transport
  • River mouth
  • Sand spit elongation
  • Tidal inlet

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Ocean Engineering


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