Mitigating suspended-sediment environmental pressure in subsea engineering through colliding turbidity currents

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Turbidity currents have extensively been explored in quiescent environments. However, during several underwater activities (e.g., dredging and deep sea mining), generated turbidity currents could travel in opposite directions and interact with each other, which could largely influence their hydrodynamics and sediment transport capacity. Therefore, we carried out a set of dual-lock-exchange experiments to study the interaction of colliding turbidity currents. Our experimental results show that the interaction of identical currents results in the reflection of both currents with almost no mixing, forcing them to travel in the opposite direction of the pre-collision one. In contrast, when a turbidity current interacts with a lighter, less-energetic current, clear mixing is observed. Furthermore, it is revealed that the collision of turbidity currents reduces the suspended sediment transported by them, which is favorable from an environmental point of view, and slightly increases the vertical dispersion of particles. In the case of two identical counterflowing currents, a 35% reduction in mass flux, accompanied by a 6% increase in turbidity current thickness, was observed in our experiments.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101916
Number of pages6
JournalResults in Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 2024


  • Turbidity currents
  • Dual-lock-exchange experiments
  • Dredging
  • Deep Sea Mining
  • Polymetallic Nodules
  • Environmental Impact
  • Breaching


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