# How are longshore currents and longshore drift related?

## How are longshore currents and longshore drift related?

Longshore currents are affected by the velocity and angle of a wave. When a wave breaks at a more acute (steep) angle on a beach, encounters a steeper beach slope, or is very high, longshore currents increase in velocity. This process, known as “longshore drift,” can cause significant beach erosion.

Is longshore drift and longshore current the same?

A longshore current is a current that flows parallel to the shore within the zone of breaking waves. Longshore drift is the movement of sediments along a coast by waves that approach at an angle to the shore but then the swash recedes directly away from it. …

What is the relationship between a swash and a longshore current?

This zig-zag motion of sediment via the swash/backwash is called Longshore (or beach) Drift. The Longshore Current moves down beach and is caused by waves hitting beach at angle. This current flows parallel to the shore and transports sediments down the coast.

### How longshore drift and longshore currents move sediment along the shore?

The transport of sediments by longshore currents is called longshore drift. The sediment moves straight down the beach with it. The sediment is again picked up by a wave that is coming in at an angle. So longshore drift moves sediment along the shore.

What is the difference between longshore drift and beach drift?

Longshore drift is simply the sediment moved by the longshore current. This current and sediment movement occur within the surf zone. This process is called “beach drift” but some workers regard it as simply part of “longshore drift” because of the overall movement of sand parallel to the coast.

What is the difference between shoreline and longshore current?

Longshore current is a type of oceanic wave that travels parallel to the shore. Therefore, these waves tend to reach the beach parallel to the shoreline. However, these waves do not always reach the shoreline in a parallel way; the waves come in a slight angle.

#### What is the difference between rip currents and longshore currents?

Currents Tutorial As longshore currents move on and off the beach, “rip currents” may form around low spots or breaks in sandbars, and also near structures such as jetties and piers. A rip current forms when a narrow, fast-moving section of water travels in an offshore direction.

How does a longshore drift work?

Longshore (littoral) drift is the movement of material along the shore by wave action. It happens when waves approach the beach at an angle. This process slowly moves material along the beach and provides a link between erosion and deposition.

What is the combined movement of sediment that results from longshore drift and beach drift?

The combined effects of sediment transport within the surf zone by the longshore current and sediment movement along the beach by swash and backwash is known as longshore transport , or littoral drift .

## How does beach drift and longshore drift move sediment along coastlines?

As wind-driven waves approach the shoreline at a slight angle, sediments are carried along the coast. Waves move sediments along the beach in a zigzag fashion (red arrows). The majority of sediment is transported in the surf zone. The movement of sand along the shoreline is known as beach drift.

Are longshore drift and beach drift the same?

What is the difference between beach drift and longshore drift?

The movement of sand along the shoreline is known as beach drift. The thicker blue arrow represents the waves approaching the shoreline at an angle. The narrower blue arrows show the current that develops as a result of the waves hitting the coastline at an angle. The current is called longshore current.

### What is the difference between longshore current and longshore drift?

The main difference between longshore current and longshore drift is that longshore currents are the ocean waves that travel parallel to the beach whereas longshore drift is the transportation of sediments along a coast, parallel to the shoreline.

How are longshore currents affected by the angle of a wave?

Longshore currents are affected by the velocity and angle of a wave. When a wave breaks at a more acute (steep) angle on a beach, encounters a steeper beach slope, or is very high, longshore currents increase in velocity.

What is the difference between backwash and longshore drift?

However, backwash, which is the receding water moving off of the beach and washing back into the ocean, returns to the ocean in a straight path that is perpendicular to the shore. This creates the zigzagged pattern of beach drift, or longshore drift, which is the progressive movement of sand and sediment along the beach.

#### What is the definition of longshore transport?

Longshore Transport. Longshore transport is defined as the movement of sand and sediment parallel to the coastline. In this lesson, you will learn how processes such as beach drift and the longshore current contribute to longshore transport, and how these processes shape the shorelines of the world.