Coastal and Ocean Science

The Centre for Coastal and Ocean Science and Engineering at Plymouth University brings together a coherent group of internationally recognised research staff from across the marine physical sciences, coastal geography and coastal engineering to further Plymouth's international research reputation in these areas.

Our mission is to understand and predict the functioning of coastal and ocean systems in support of appropriate management of resources and activities.

The Centre comprises three research groups. For more information about these groups please visit their websites below.

Coastal Processes Research Group

The Coastal Processes Research Group is an internationally recognised group of researchers, specialising in field studies of coastal processes and seeking to understand and predict the behaviour of coastal and estuarine systems. Research topics include:

  • beach morphodynamics and nearshore sediment transport
  • coastal erosion and storm impacts
  • video monitoring of coastal systems
  • coastal process modelling
  • estuarine processes and evolution

The group operate a research-informed consultancy Coastal Marine Applied Research

Marine Physics Research Group

Our marine physics group study fundamental physical processes occurring within marine systems, from microscopic to oceanic scale. The group has particular specialisms in: 

  • dynamical physical oceanography 
  • flocculation dynamics of cohesive sediments 
  • particle imaging methods 
  • turbulence microstructure measurements and visualisation 
  • non-linear internal waves. 

COAST Engineering Research Group

The COAST group is focused firmly on major problems facing society regarding rising sea levels, flood risk, and marine renewable energy which have been highlighted in recent government reviews. COAST contains internationally recognised specialists in: 

  • coastal engineering
  • renewable energy
  • flood risk and coastal protection
  • field experimentation
  • instrument design and laboratory modelling
  • numerical modelling 
  • theoretical analysis

Plymouth Ocean Forecasting Centre

Plymouth Ocean Forecasting Centre (POFC) is an international centre of expertise in ocean modelling. We deliver computer simulations of ocean state both for the past (hindcast) and the future (forecast), which have a wide range of applications in operational oceanography. We provide a fully integrated end-to-end solution from data collection, research, model development and configuration to end-user training. We work globally and have created regional ocean models for the Arabian Sea (including the Gulf), the western Arctic Ocean, the Black and Celtic Seas.

Coastal and ocean science staff