Dr Paul Bayle

Job: Postdoctoral Research Assistant

Employer: BRGM (French Geological Survey) & University of Bordeaux

PhD Thesis: Coastal protection and nearshore evolution under sea level rise

PhD Supervisors: Dr Christopher Blenkinsopp, Dr Alan Hunter and Prof Gerd Masselink

Global mean sea level is rising at an increasing rate, and this represents one of the main long term coastal hazards. Existing hard engineering coastal defences are neither designed nor efficient against Sea Level Rise (SLR), and therefore are likely to be over-topped and breached during this century.

A recent soft engineering technique named “dynamic revetment” or “cobble berm” has been implemented in some coastal places to protect the hinterland against storm wave and erosion. This type of revetment is not static and moves under wave’s action while dissipating the wave’s energy. By optimising the design of the dynamic revetment as well as the deployment area, this structure is supposed to self-maintain its relative position to sea level under SLR. The pebbles composing such a protection are expected to move landward under SLR, thus keep protecting the hinterland against future extreme wave climate.

The performance of the revetment was tested in the GWK large scale flume, Hannover, Germany, through the ‘DynaRev’ experiment. The experiment was designed to assess the behaviour and the capacity of the revetment to adapt and protect sandy beaches against waves attack and SLR.

Following his PhD Paul initially worked as a Research Assistant at the University of Bath with his former PhD supervisor, Dr Chris Blenkinsopp. The global project goal was to better understand the behaviour of dynamic revetments and demonstrate the potential of low-cost methods of coastal protection that could be installed with minimal expertise or investment.  In November 2020 Paul embarked on a new postdoc position at BRGM (the French Geological Survey) and the University of Bordeaux on ‘Water level decomposition and importance of infra-gravity waves in the Arcachon lagoon’.

Paul’s WISE CDT studentship was located in the department of Architecture and Civil Engineering at the University of Bath. He was part of the Water, Environment and Infrastructure Resilience (WEIR) research group, and the Water Innovation and Research Centre (WIRC). Paul’s research was focused on physical and numerical modelling to better understand beach profile evolution under SLR.  His interests include general coastal protection with a specific expertise in submerged artificial reef and dynamic revetment. He is also trained in operational oceanography and survey management.

Before joining the WISE CDT, Paul completed a two-year degree in Civil Engineering at the University of Paul Sabatier in Toulouse, then a BSc degree in Earth and Environment Science at the University of Bordeaux and an MSc degree in Oceanography at the University of Southampton. His MSc thesis was completed at the Griffith Centre for Coastal Management (Australia) on beach morphodynamics impacted by artificial submerged reef. Paul also led and managed a Hydralab+ project, running the DynaRev experiment at the GWK large scale flume.


  • P.M. Bayle, C.E. Blenkinsopp, D. Conley, G. Masselink, T. Beuzen and R. Almar (2020). Performance of a dynamic cobble berm revetment for coastal protection, under increasing water level. Coastal Engineering, 159. DOI: 10.1016/j.coastaleng.2020.103712
  • P. M. Bayle, T. Beuzen, C. E. Blenkinsopp, T.E. Baldock, and I.L. Turner (2020). Beach Profile Changes under Sea Level Rise in Laboratory Flume Experiments at Di erent Scale. Journal of Coastal Research 95(sp1), 192-196. DOI: 10.2112/SI95-038.1
  • K. Martins, P. Bonneton, P.M. Bayle, C.E. Blenkinsopp, A. Mouragues, H. Michallet (2020). Surf Zone Wave Measurements from Lidar Scanners: Analysis of Non-hydrostatic Processes. Journal of Coastal Research 95(sp1), 1189-1194. DOI: 10.2112/SI95-231.1
  • O. Bryan, P.M. Bayle, C.E. Blenkinsopp, and A.J. Hunter (2019). Breaking Wave Imaging using Lidar and Sonar, IEEE Journal of Oceanic Engineering. DOI: 10.1109/JOE.2019.2900967
  • C.E. Blenkinsopp, P.M. Bayle, D. Conley, G. Masselink, E. Gulson, I. Kelly, R. Almar, I.L. Turner, T.E. Baldock, T. Beuzen, R. McCall, H. Rijper, A.Reniers, P. Troch, D. Gallach- Sanchez, A. Hunter, O, Bryan, G. Hennessey, P. Ganderton, S. Schimmels, M. Kudella (2019). Dynamic Coastal Protection: Resilience of Dynamic Revetments(DynaRev). Proceedings of the HYDRALAB+Joint User Meeting, Bucharest, May2019.
  • P.M. Bayle, C.E. Blenkinsopp, D. Conley and G. Masselink (2018). Coastal Adaptation Under Sea Level Rise: Prototype scale Measurements and Modelling of a Dynamic Cobble Berm Revetment. Coastal Engineering Proceedings, 1(36), risk.64. DOI: 10.9753/icce.v36.risk.64

Read: field experiment trip – dynamic revetment in North Cove, Washington State, USA

Contact: paul-bayle-a6465095

2017 Summer School Research Presentation

2017 Summer School Research Poster