National Geographic in the Coastal Basin filming Japanese Tsunami experiment

Wave generation capabilities

The paddles will produce regular waves with a peak wave height of 0.32m. The paddles also function as wave absorbers to mitigate the reflections in the basin. Wave synthesising software allows long and short-crested spectral sea states to be generated, as well as special wave effects.

Technical specification

The Coastal Basin is 15.5m long by 10m wide with a maximum operating depth of 0.5m.


  • 20 absorbing piston paddles operating as five modules of four paddles
  • each paddle is 0.5m wide by 0.5m
  • modules may be configured close-coupled as a straight line or arc, or repositioned individually anywhere in the basin.


  • unidirectional flow up to 0.5m/s via five individually controlled pumps across the basin.


  • pumps are able to deal with large grain sediment (up to 2mm grain size); the equivalent of very coarse sand.

Floor and beach

  • can simulate a fixed-bed beach and support sediment and cement beach models
  • elemental construction means that it is easily reconfigurable by two people
  • all mooring points have M12 threads
  • 1.0m x 0.5m grid of M12 threads throughout the central section of the tank providing mooring capabilities.
COAST Lab - 1409508 Coastal Basin
COAST Lab - 1409553 Coastal Basin
COAST Lab - 1315840 Coastal Basin
COAST Lab - 1315878 Coastal Basin
COAST Lab - 1409533 - Coastal Basin
Please contact the Coastal, Ocean and Sediment Transport (COAST) laboratory if you would like to use the coastal basin