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Relations and consequences of Critical Infrastructures
Deltares developed and uses the CIrcle tool to determine cascading effects for Critical Infrastructures. Stakeholder knowledge and experience input is vital for this method and in 2015 several workshops have been organized where different types of stakeholders discussed possible cascading effects in several regions after certain types of hazards. For instance for the region of Waterland we performed a cascading effects analysis after a major flood based on the knowledge that the stakeholders of that region shared with us in a CIrcle workshop.
Real-time monitoring and forecasting of dike strength
The software system FEWS-DAM Live integrates the monitoring and forecasting of dike strength. Sensors installed in specific cross-sections of the dike provide measurements of water pressure that allow a real-time safety factor to be calculated. Failure probabilities for the dike are obtained using fragility curves and predicted water levels.
Propelling research into scouring caused by ships
Deltares performed physical scale-model tests to study how ship propeller jets impact water beds. Guidelines for scour protection have been in place a long time but they are based on limited datasets. The outcome of this project indicated where the guidelines could be optimised. This will eventually result in major savings in construction and maintenance.
Physical model tests for Nordergründe offshore wind farm
A physical model test was conducted on scour protection for the offshore wind turbines in the Nordergründe wind farm, Germany. The scour protection needs to cope with significant variations in the level of the seabed. Stereo photography was used to observe and quantify the performance of the tested scour protection layouts.
Bioaccumulation of PCBs from microplastics in Norway lobster (Nephrops norvegicus): an experimental study
Plastic debris acts as a sorbent phase for hydrophobic organic compounds like polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Chemical partitioning models predict that the ingestion of microplastics with adsorbed chemicals in the field will tend not to result in significant net desorption of the chemical to the organism's tissues. This is expected due to the often limited differences in fugacity of the chemical between the indigestible plastic materials and the tissues, which are typically already exposed in the same environment to the same chemicals as the plastic. However laboratory trials validating these model predictions are scarce. In this study, PCB-loaded microplastics were offered to field-collected Norway lobsters (Nephrops norvegicus) during in vivo feeding laboratory experiments. Each ingestion experiment was repeated with and without loading a mixture of ten PCB congeners onto plastic microspheres (MS) made of polyethylene (PE) and polystyrene (PS) with diameters of either 500–600 μm or 6 μm. We observed that the presence of chemicals adsorbed to ingested microplastics did not lead to significant bioaccumulation of the chemicals in the exposed organisms. There was a limited uptake of PCBs in Nephrops tail tissue after ingestion of PCB-loaded PE MS, while almost no PCBs were detected in animals exposed to PS MS. In general, our results demonstrated that after 3 weeks of exposure the ingestion of plastic MS themselves did not affect the nutritional state of wild Nephrops.
Optical measuring technology shows complex flows in locks
The application of an advanced measurement technique PIV (Particle Image Velocimetry) to capture the complex flow patterns downstream of a lock gate. This data is used to validate numerical tools for the optimisation of lock designs.
Nanoparticles : a new concern for the environment?
Nanotechnology brings us many benefits, but also a new type of contaminant to worry about: nanoparticles. These very small particles are used in, for instance, sun screens, deodorants and toothpaste but also in medical applications like smart medicines and antibacterial textile. They enter the aquatic environment through our waste water. The properties that make them useful in personal care products also make them harmful for organisms.
Modelling of soil-water interaction
The effects of soil-water interaction such as erosion, scour or wave attack can seriously damage engineering structures. To investigate some of these problems, Deltares worked with the University of Cambridge in the European Project MPM-Dredge to develop a new numerical tool based on the Material Point Method (MPM).
Modelling catchment water quality in New Zealand
This study established a catchment flow and nutrient load modelling framework that was applied and validated for the Waituna Lagoon catchment in Southland, New Zealand. The modelling framework spatially accumulates individual farm-generated nitrogen and phosphorus loads down the drainage network of each sub-catchment to provide an estimate of seasonal nutrient inputs to the lagoon. The model can be used as a catchment management planning tool by calculating the effects of emission reduction measures.
Living with Dutch peat
The Netherlands arguably has the longest history in the world of human-induced land subsidence. This paper discusses the historical development of subsidence in the Netherlands, as well as the present-day consequences for those living in the peatlands.