DongCheng Li

Date of Award


Level of Access Assigned by Author

Open-Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Mechanical Engineering


Vijay G. Panchang

Second Committee Member

Zeki Demirbilek

Third Committee Member

Vincent Caccese


Ports and harbors can be used for commercial, recreational and military purpose. Compared to other kinds of transportation (railroad, airplane, highways), waterborne commerce has two significant advantages: low cost and high capacity. Many nations use waterborne commerce as a major source of transport. Several major U.S. portsharbors currently have renovation plans in response to the future expansion of ocean-borne world commerce, and coastal engineering projects generally require a detailed knowledge of the wave field in the project areas. Physical and numerical model studies are often conducted concurrently for these projects to evaluate technical feasibility and to optimize design alternatives. A coastal surface water wave model of the mild slope equation, CGWAVE is often used to predict waves since it is applicable to harbors, open coasts, inlets, around islands, and estuaries. The U.S. Army Corps Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC, formerly WES) developed a physical model of Los Angeles and Long Beach harbors. It was utilized to simulate the propagation of both monochromatic and spectral waves in these harbors for assessing a range of wave periods from several different directions. Data collected in that physical model study at locations of prototype gages were used to determine if the numerical model CGWAVE could reproduce observed measurements. This determination would help to make about future usage of CGWAVE model in prospects and to minimize expensive hydraulic model construction. Comparison between the results of numerical model predictions and actual wave heights measured at more than 50 wave gages is presented in this thesis.