Floating forest: a novel concept of floating breakwater-windbreak structure

C. M. Wang, M. M. Han, J. Lyu, W. H. Duan, K. H. Jung, S. Kang An

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperOther

5 Citations (Scopus)


The floating forest is a novel floating breakwater-windbreak structure that can be deployed in a water environment to reduce both wind speed and wave height behind it. Its purpose is to protect fragile coastlines, port terminals, marinas, and floating structures from severe storms. It can also be used to create a landing sea strip for seaplanes. The floating forest comprises several segments of breakwater hull in a lateral arch shape, caissons or mooring lines at the ends of the segments to keep the arch segments in place, and a tilted deck installed with arrays of tubes. The breakwater hull segment is typically a few hundred meters long, but the scale may be adjusted on different demands. The width is adjusted to fit the incoming wave length. A shallow draft is used since for surface waves most of the wave energy is concentrated near the mean water level. The deck of each hull segment has a gradient to create a beach run-up, and tube arrays are installed on the tilted deck. The hollow tubes provide resistance against the incoming wind, and are connected to the internal channels inside the hull that end with openings on the vertical front wall of the hull. The mooring system comprises either caissons in shallow water depths or several groups of steel mooring chains that are spread around the floating breakwater in deep waters. The primary material of the floating forest is marine prestressed concrete. As a part of the feasibility study, the structure was modelled by using linear BEM software package HydroSTAR (developed by Bureau Veritas) to study the 3D wave diffraction near the hull and its wave transmissibility with inputs of measured wave data in Gold Coast, Australia. Parametric studies were carried out to optimize the main dimensions of the structure. The results show that the arch shape floating structure has a good performance as compared with traditional rectangular breakwaters, and wave height can be reduced by half at the peak wave period. CFD analysis was also performed and it was found that the wind speed could be reduced by 20% for 1 km behind the floating forest and up to 30 m in height; thereby establishing its effectiveness as a windbreak as well.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWCFS 2019
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the World Conference on Floating Solutions
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 2020
EventWorld Conference on Floating Solutions 2019 - Queenstown, Singapore
Duration: 22 Apr 201923 Apr 2019

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Civil Engineering
ISSN (Print)2366-2557
ISSN (Electronic)2366-2565


ConferenceWorld Conference on Floating Solutions 2019
Abbreviated titleWCFS 2019
Internet address


  • Boundary element method
  • Computational fluid dynamics
  • Diffraction
  • Floating breakwater
  • Hydrodynamics
  • Windbreak

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