Horizontal dispersion plays an important role in coastal water sediment and pollutant transport and therefore it must be well assessed and understood for the successful development of any numerical modelling scheme. The performance of a dispersion model was assessed, using experimental Lagrangian drifter data. The method applied in the drifter tracking experiments was introduced, and the numerical modelled results were compared with the in situ data. It appears that the simulated results were sensitive to the bathymetry resolution and wind conditions. In addition, the in-situ drifter trajectories were compared with the numerical modelling results in Moreton Bay, Australia. Good correlation with an R2 of 0.73 between drifter data and modelled results was achieved indicating that the same set of model evaluations can be used to compute the particles spreading in further dispersion research.

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