Coastal Engineering

Breakwaters and Coastal Structures

YouTupe Wave modelIncreasing intensity of storms and coastal erosion is impacting coastal communities and harbours. Our coastal engineers have experience in designing coastal structures to help communities reduce these impact. Our approach encompasses a full range of options, from hard structures to nature-based approaches.

Wave Model and Breakwater Extension Design at Lower Sandy Point Nova Scotia. For this coastal engineering study, our wave gauges identified a mix or harbour resonance and swell penetration compromising mooring conditions in the harbour during storms. We developed a sophisticated wave model to evaluate solutions for mitigating these problems. Breakwater extensions were found to be the optimal solution, and we used the models to size them appropriately to meet agitation requirements inside the basin.


CBCL Limited's experience in dredging and sediment transport ranges from small scale harbour sedimentation studies to multimillion dollar navigation improvement projects. Our team of engineers and scientists address complex issues through sound planning, modelling and design as well as on site management of dredging projects.

Sydney Harbour Dredge ProjectSydney Harbour Channel Dredge Project in Sydney, Nova Scotia. The Sydney Ports Corporation (SPC) retained CBCL Limited as Owner's Engineer for the Sydney Harbour Channel Dredge Project in Sydney, Nova Scotia. The project, which was the largest capital dredge project in Atlantic Canada, involved the removal of over 4 million cubic metres of sedimentary material from a 9 km long portion of the harbour channel. Dredged materials were placed in a newly constructed Confined Disposal Facility (CDF) which was designed to safely house the dredged material and to ultimately serve as the founding surface for a future marine terminal.

Harbour Dynamics

CBCL has extensive experience working for ports and harbours, notably in Atlantic Canada which has a wide diversity of coastal environments, with associated challenges and opportunities. Within this diversity, correctly characterizing background harbour dynamics is key. Natural challenges can range from severe wave attack on the Atlantic shores, to huge Fundy tidal ranges and shifting sands on the Gulf of Saint Lawrence. Successful harbour structures must not only protect from severe storm conditions and sea level rise, but also minimize potential harbour infilling or shoreline erosion. Our engineering solutions rely on a sound understanding of harbour dynamics, based on field observations and tailored numerical models.

Hydronamic Sediment Transport ModelingHydrodynamic, Sediment Transport and Water Quality Modeling In Saint John Harbour, NB. CBCL Limited has a long history of successful coastal studies in Saint John Harbour. To investigate marine infrastructure in terms of feasibility, impacts and hydraulic forces, CBCL's experienced staff of coastal and hydraulic engineers conduct sophisticated three-dimensional numerical modelling to simulate the most dynamic and challenging port environment in Eastern Canada, combining huge tides, large river flows and sediment loads.

Littoral Drift

Littoral drift describes the 'river of sand' flowing along beaches under the action of waves. Understanding littoral drift is paramount to sound design of coastal structures, and planning of dredging works.

Tabusintac Dredging Reduction and Navigation Safety StudyTabusintac Dredging Reduction and Navigation Safety Study, NB. The navigation channel to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans' Small Craft Harbour at Tabusintac, northeastern New Brunswick, presently meanders through shallow shifting shoals between migrating barrier islands. CBCL Limited conducted a thorough coastal study to help predict the channel's evolution and assess coastal engineering alternatives for safer navigation. The alternatives included training walls at strategically selected tidal inlets and a modified dredging strategy. The model-based predictions proved very useful to re-define effective dredging practices used in subsequent years.




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