Armor Damage of Overtopped Mound Breakwaters in Depth-Limited Breaking Wave Conditions

Patricia Mares-Nasarre*, Gloria Argente, M. Esther Gómez-Martín, Josep R. Medina

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Armor damage due to wave attack is the principal failure mode to be considered when designing conventional mound breakwaters. Armor layers of mound breakwaters are typically designed using formulas in the literature for non-overtopped mound breakwaters in non-breaking wave conditions, although overtopped mound breakwaters in the depth-induced breaking wave zone are common design conditions. In this study, 2D physical tests with an armor slope H/V = 3/2 are analyzed in order to better describe the hydraulic stability of overtopped mound breakwaters with double-layer rock, double-layer randomly-place cube and single-layer Cubipod® armors in depth-limited breaking wave conditions. Hydraulic stability formulas are derived for each armor section (front slope, crest and rear slope) and each armor layer. The front slope of overtopped double-layer rock structures is more stable than the front slope of non-overtopped mound breakwaters in breaking wave conditions. When wave attack increases, armor damage appears first on the front slope, later on the crest and, finally, on the rear side. However, once the damage begins on the crest and rear side, the progression is much faster than on the front slope, because more wave energy is dissipated through the armored crest and rear side.
Original languageEnglish
Article number952
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Marine Science and Engineering
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • mound breakwater
  • hydraulic stability
  • overtopped breakwater
  • armor damage
  • depth-limited waves
  • breaking waves
  • Cubipod


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