Field measurements of wave run-up on coastal structures with a pressure step gauge

Duration of the project

01.02.2020. - 31.10.2020.

Countries and institutions involved in the project

Tallinn University of Technology
Hamburg University of Technology

Project manager

Prof. Dr. Tarmo Soomere

Aim of the project

Wave run-up field measurements on German sea dikes have been carried out at the German North Sea coast in the last decade by the local authority responsible for coastal protection of the federal state of Schleswig-Holstein (LKN-SH) and in cooperation with the Institute of River and Coastal Engineering of TUHH. Lately, TUHH has developed a new prototype for wave run-up field measurements. Among others, the results have been used to validate and improve empirical formulas proposed in the well-known EurOtop manual.

We would like to use German know-how and equipment to measure wave run-up on local rubble mound breakwaters which are adapted to icy conditions (with a smooth slope, similar to German sea dikes) and are thus different from normal breakwaters. The results are expected to have influence on empirical wave run-up calculations in Nordic and Baltic countries and thus improving cost-effective coastal engineering and management.

The aims of the project are: i) implementation and optimization of the step gauge, ii) validation and improvement wave run-up formulas (e.g. EurOtop), iii) joint analysis and assessment of measurements at the North Sea and Baltic Sea, and finally iv) dissemination of results (public seminars and preparation of a joint scientific publication).

Main activities

  1. Implementation of a step gauge based on pressure sensors at the Estonian Baltic Sea coast, venue: Kakumäe marina (breakwater) in Tallinn, Estonia
  2. Analysis and assessment of measurement results, venue: Hamburg (Germany), Tallinn (Estonia).
  3. Presentation of results and guidelines for implementation in coastal engineering praxis, venue: Tallinn (Estonia), Riga (Latvia)

Public events

Public seminars on using results for the design and management of coastal structures in Baltic countries, venue: Tallinn (Estonia), Riga (Latvia), October 2020

Speakers: Mr. Rain Männikus, Mr. Norman Dreier, Prof. Peter Fröhle, Prof. Tarmo Soomere, and others (tbd.)

Direct and indirect target group


  • TUHH, Institute of River and Coastal Engineering, 20 employees, ca. 150 B.Sc. and 50 M.Sc. students
  • TUT, Department of Cybernetics, Wave Engineering Laboratory, 13 employees, 20 M.Sc students


  • Local authorities responsible for coastal protection and management in Germany, Estonia, Latvia, universities and research institutes with focus on coastal engineering, moreover hydraulic engineering bureaus, local construction companies etc. Ca. 50 Persons.