A generalized analytical model for benthic water flux forced by linear surface gravity waves over a series of layered hydrogeologic units is developed by adapting a previous solution for a hydrogeologic unit with an infinite thickness (Case I) to a unit with a finite thickness (Case II) and to a dual-unit system (Case III). The model compares favorably with laboratory observations. The amplitude of wave-forced benthic water flux is shown to be directly proportional to the amplitude of the wave, the permeability of the hydrogeologic unit, and the wave number and inversely proportional to the kinematic viscosity of water. A dimensionless amplitude parameter is introduced and shown to reach a maximum where the product of water depth and the wave number is 1.2. Submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) is a benthic water discharge flux to a marine water body. The Case I model estimates an 11.5-cm/d SGD forced by a wave with a 1 s period and 5-cm amplitude in water that is 0.5-m deep. As this wave propagates into a region with a 0.3-m-thick hydrogeologic unit, with a no-flow bottom boundary, the Case II model estimates a 9.7-cm/d wave-forced SGD. As this wave propagates into a region with a 0.2-m-thick hydrogeologic unit over an infinitely thick, more permeable unit, the Case III quasi-confined model estimates a 15.7-cm/d wave-forced SGD. The quasi-confined model has benthic constituent flux implications in coral reef, karst, and clastic regions. Waves may undermine tracer and seepage meter estimates of SGD at some locations. Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.
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Generalized analytical model for benthic water flux forced by surface gravity waves