• K VENKATESWARA RAO

      Articles written in Journal of Earth System Science

    • Investigation of rip current processes along Visakhapatnam beaches, east coast of India: A study based on GNSS drifters and dye experiments

      SURISETTY VV ARUN KUMAR SIVAIAH B VENKATESWARLU CH GIREESH B SRIDEVI T K VENKATESWARA RAO PRASAD K V S R RASHMI SHARMA

      More Details Abstract Fulltext PDF

      Rip currents are known as one of the most dangerous hazards on sandy beaches worldwide. Indian beaches are least explored to study the variability of rip currents in space and time. The present study is the first attempt made to understand its dynamics by utilizing indigenously developed GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) drifters and Rhodamine-B dye experiments. The Rama Krishna (RK) and Rushikonda Beaches of Visakhapatnam are chosen for this study, due to a recorded number of rip current-related drowning cases observed during the past decade. Few experiments were conducted during pre- and post-monsoon seasons of 2018. Drifters work on the Lagrangian principle, where they measure the current velocities along their paths driven by the surface currents. Error analysis of drifter measurements showed that they are capable of resolving surf zone motions very accurately. Strong rip currents were observed in few locations in the study area, where at times current velocities reached ${\sim}$1 ms$^{-1}$. Also, Rhodamine-B dye was released into the rip current prone zones along with the drifters and observed that the dye patches also followed the drifters. From these experiments, it has been observed that the rip currents are relatively strong during the post-monsoon season, which could be due to the change in the beach morphology. Similar experiments with more number of drifters would help in understanding rip current dynamics and would help in reducing rip current drowning in the beaches.

      $\bf{Highlights}$

      $\bullet$ GNSS based drifters have been designed, developed and field-tested to measure rip currents in the surf zone.

      $\bullet$ Post-Processing Kinematic (PPK) resulted in position estimates with centimeter level accuracy.

      $\bullet$ The drifters are capable to resolve the surf zone motions more accurately in the order of greater than 0.02 ms$^{-1}$.

      $\bullet$ Several drifter deployments and Rhodamine-B dye experiments were carried out at RK and Rushikonda Beaches to measure the dangerous rip currents and coastal currents.

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