Empirical model to estimate permeability of surface sediments in the German Bight (North Sea)


As the determinant of solute and particle fluxes through sediments, quantifying sediment permeability is vital step in understanding of the exchange phenomena between the water column and sediment as permeability determines the mode and intensity of solute and particle fluxes. Reliable estimates of sediment permeability are therefore a constraint on the accurate implementation of benthic biogeochemical models. This is particularly true for the North Sea, as field data are scarce and available grain-size-based models fail to represent the full range of sediment types. In this study, we combine measurements of sediment permeability and grain size analysis with a generic permeability model to establish a high-resolution permeability map of the sediment in the German Bight (North Sea). Our results show a good agreement between model-based prediction and measurements of permeability, even for a wide range of permeability values.
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