Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles Ing.D (15 April 1900 – 21 February 1967) was a Spanish civil engineer and professor of ports at the School of Civil Engineering (Spanish: Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingenieros de Caminos, Canales y Puertos, ETSICCP) in Madrid. He was chairman of the Spanish delegation to the Permanent International Association of Navigation Congresses (PIANC) and was elected as an academic at the Spanish Royal Academy of Sciences, although he did not take up the latter position. He made notable contributions in the field of coastal engineering, including methods for the calculation of breakwater stability and research which led to the development of the Iribarren number.
Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles
|Born||15 April 1900|
Irún, Gipuzkoa, Spain
|Died||21 February 1967 (aged 66)|
|Alma mater||Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingenieros de Caminos, Canales y Puertos|
|Known for||Iribarren number|
|Awards||Civil Order of Alfonso X, the Wise (1959), Order of Civil Merit, Chevalier (Knight) of the Legion of Honour.|
|Fields||Civil Engineering Hydraulic Engineering|
|Institutions||Centro de Estudios y Experimentación de Obras Públicas|
He undertook detailed research at several ports in the Bay of Biscay which were subject to extreme waves and frequent storms, and this underpinned much of his early research work. Iribarren recognised that many of the ports in the Bay of Biscay were insufficiently protected from severe wave and storm conditions, which had resulted in a number of shipwrecks and threatened the economic viability of the local fishing community, with whom he enjoyed a close relationship.
Iribarren identified that much port and harbour infrastructure design in Spain relied on simply replicating methods used on previous projects, with the guiding principles for the design of new harbour and coastal projects often relying solely on a simple analysis of whether previous construction methods had been successful or not. Dissatisfied with such a wholly empirical approach, which he considered did not take into account the effects of location-specific issues such as wave and sediment behaviour, he developed scientific and mathematical approaches which could be applied to specific cases, based on extensive research and an understanding of wave behaviour and coastal dynamics, in which he made extensive use of observation and photography.
He was instrumental in the development of a research facility for coastal engineering, the first of its kind in Spain. His work achieved international prominence and remains highly relevant, being subject to ongoing development and underpinning several contemporary design methods used in coastal engineering and coastal protection works.
Life and careerEdit
Education and early workEdit
Iribarren was born in Irún in 1900, the son of Plácido José Iribarren Aldaz, a wealthy businessman with properties in Cuba, and Teresa Cavanilles Sanz. The eldest of three brothers, he initially studied at the San Luis school in his hometown, where he excelled as a student of mathematics. After completing a baccalaureate at the Instituto de Peñaflorida high school in San Sebastián, he left for Madrid to study exact science, but changed his course in 1921 and began studying civil engineering, graduating in 1927 as the best-placed student on the course. Upon graduation, he initially worked for the Ministry of Public Works (Spanish: Ministerio de Obras Públicas) at the regional Catalonian roads department in Girona.
The Guipuzkoan ports, Mutriku and The Iribarren NumberEdit
Iribarren was transferred from Girona to his home province of Gipuzkoa in 1929, where he was appointed Chief Engineer of the Grupo de Puertos de Gipuzkoa (Gipuzkoan Ports Group) at the Ministry of Public Works, with an office in San Sebastián. In this role he was responsible for the ports of Deba, Isla de los Faisanes, Getaria, Mutriku, San Sebastián and Zumaia, along with overseeing the design and execution of several port and harbour projects. The role provided Iribarren with the opportunity to make detailed observations of the Gipuzkoan coastline, which informed his theories and research output. He undertook research into several aspects of breakwater and wave behaviour at each of the ports under his control, as well as the general Gipuzkoan coastline and Bay of Biscay.
Iribarren undertook extensive research at the Port of Mutriku, where he was responsible for the design and construction of a breakwater to the outer harbour in 1932. The works mitigated the approach and entry difficulties for shipping at the outer harbour area, but Iribarren observed that the existing vertical sea walls of the inner harbour were still causing significant wave reflection, leading to dangerous berthing conditions for ships once inside the mouth of the harbour. Despite initial opposition from the local fishing community, he was successful in implementing a sloping breakwater at the inner harbour in 1936, which ended the problems caused by reflection and made safe berthing of ships possible.
The work at Mutriku provided Iribarren with the opportunity to develop his fundamental theories around refraction, allowing him the time and environment in which to research and observe his theoretical approximations of wave direction and wave characteristics from available depth contours. He published papers on his work at Mutriku in 1932 and 1936, and this work led to the development of a dimensionless parameter for waves breaking on a slope, which was further developed by Jurjen Battjes in 1974 and is known as the Iribarren number or Iribarren parameter.
The importance of this parameter for so many aspects of waves breaking on slopes appears to justify that it be given a special name. In the author's opinion it is appropriate to call it the "Iribarren number" (denoted by "Ir"), in honor of the man who introduced it and who has made many other valuable contributions to our knowledge of water waves.— Jurjen A. Battjes, "Surf Similarity", Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Coastal Engineering (1974)
Works at the Bidasoa RiverEdit
In 1934, the City Council of Hondarribia approached Iribarren to investigate problems related to sediment transport and erosion at the Hondarribia Bar at the mouth of the Bidasoa River on the Spanish border with France, and proposed the construction of a breakwater. A budget of 3,000 pesetas was approved in order to construct a small trial section of breakwater. Recognising the complicated nature of the interaction between wave behaviour and sediment, and the need to design an effective solution, Iribarren spent a number of years studying the waves and coastal morphodynamics in Hondarribia to understand the relevant boundary conditions and prepare an effective design. He published his findings in 1941, and although his plans were supported by the Ministry of Public Works, they were met with opposition from the City Council and the breakwater works did not commence.
Meanwhile, Iribarren was approached by the French authorities to prepare a design for similar works across the river in the town of Hendaye. After completing a design in 1945, he supervised the construction of the Hendaye breakwater which commenced in October 1946. The project was a major success and in 1949, seeing the results of Iribarren's work in Hendaye, the City Council in Hondarribia approved the construction of a breakwater to his design. Iribarren supervised construction which commenced on 7 September 1949, with the works completed in 1955 at a cost of 18 million pesetas. He made changes through an iterative design process as construction progressed, with the final breakwater being 1,100 metres in length, 40 metres wide at the base and using 300,000 tonnes of armourstone from a quarry in Jaizkibel. The project was a success, solving the erosion problems, increasing navigation safety and creating a large recreational beach.
Professorship, establishment of the Ports Laboratory and international workEdit
Iribarren was appointed as professor at the ETSICCP in 1939, filling the vacancy left by the death of Eduardo Castro Pascual during the Spanish civil war. Iribarren promoted the idea of establishing a Spanish centre for the study of coastal engineering and harbour works, modelled on research facilities in universities such as the Technical University of Berlin and ETH Zurich. This was achieved in 1948 with the creation of the Ports Laboratory (Spanish: Laboratorio de Puertos) in Madrid, with Iribarren as Director. In 1957 the laboratory became part of the Centro de Estudios y Experimentación de Obras Públicas.
He was involved in a number of notable Spanish and international civil engineering projects throughout his career. Notable projects included San Sebastián Airport, the breakwater at the port of Palma de Mallorca, major works at the Port of Cadiz, the port of Melilla in 1944, the canalisation of the Untxin, the oil terminal of Luanda in 1956 and coastal engineering works in the Gulf of Sirte, Cartagena de Indias, and Venezuela. Between 1960 and 1961, he was commissioned by the Government of Spain to work alongside a French delegation in Paris to undertake studies for railway and port infrastructure at Villa Cisneros to transport iron ore mined in The Province of the Sahara.
The Port of Palma de Mallorca and the Wave Diagram MethodEdit
Iribarren's approach to the study of wave behaviour for the works at the outer breakwater of the Port of Palma de Mallorca was used as the basis for several harbour projects across Spain after he published his método del diagrama de ondas or método de los planos de oleaje (wave diagram method / method of wave planes) in 1941. Building on research which he had commenced at Mutriku in 1932, the work was subsequently translated and published in English, Portuguese and French. Iribarren noted that his method was an approximation, albeit one which represented a significant advance on previous design techniques. Unlike existing approaches, his method was grounded in the principles of using the results of fundamental research to devise solutions to a practical problem.
Iribarren's approach was not to design by intuition or simplified empirical comparisons with previous projects, but rather to research and determine the nature of wave propagation towards a specific coastline and assess wave characteristics and bathymetry, along with detailed analysis of the shape and orientation of the coastline or harbour under consideration.
He used as a starting point the existing theory of trochoidal waves, assuming circular orbital motion for liquid molecules in a body of water agitated by swell at infinite depth, and elliptical motion for those at reduced depths. Iribarren took into account shoaling, and the modifications which waves undergo approaching the coast as they enter shallow water, which he defined as a point where water depth H is equal to or less than half the original wavelength, Lo.
Iribarren noted that detailed observation and the production of graphical records of wave and sediment behaviour were necessary to correlate, and if necessary modify, the theoretical approximations used in his method, as he had himself done at Palma de Mallorca. He continuously refined and developed his methods and the associated mathematics. By 1954, with further iterations and adjustments made and the method successfully implemented on a number of projects across Spain and internationally, he considered that the wave diagram method was sufficiently developed for use in most practical cases.
International recognition and publication of Obras MaritimasEdit
Iribarren developed a formula for the stability of breakwater slopes under wave attack in 1938. However, the political situation in Spain under the Franco dictatorship restricted the dissemination of Iribarren's work, which led to more common international adoption of a similar method which had been developed by Robert Y. Hudson at the USACE Waterways Experiment Station (WES) in Vicksburg, Mississippi, known as Hudson's equation.
For breakwater slopes steeper than 1:2, the formulae of Hudson and Iribarren produce similar results, but for more gentle slopes the Hudson formula deviates considerably and stability becomes infinite, which is invalid. Iribarren continued to develop his work on breakwater stability and presented his final publication on the subject at the PIANC Conference of 1965 in Stockholm.
Iribarren obtained a level of international recognition as chair of the Spanish delegation to PIANC, and in addition to his address at the 1965 event, he presented his research work at the PIANC international congresses in Lisbon, Rome and London (congresses XVII to XIX). Beginning in the late 1940s, he was invited to the United States by the engineering schools of The University of California, Berkeley and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he delivered several lectures.
He presented his research to the Beach Erosion Board of the United States Army Corps of Engineers, a body which subsequently translated and published much of the research work Iribarren undertook with his long-term collaborator and fellow Spanish engineer Casto Nogales y Olano (1908-1985), with whom Iribarren also collaborated on a two-volume engineering textbook entitled Maritime works: Waves and dikes (Spanish: Obras maritimas: Oleaje y diques) which was first published in 1954, with a second edition in 1964.
Iribarren married Maria Hiriart, a French national, in 1939. He was the eldest of three brothers, one of whom, Luis Iribarren Cavanilles (19 February 1902–4 May 1984), was a dentist who served as manager of the Spain national football team in four matches between 1953 and 1954, and played football for both Real Unión and Real Sociedad Gimnástica Española. His second brother, José Iribarren Cavanilles, was the municipal architect in Irún.
In February 1967, Iribarren died as the result of a fire whilst driving in a Fiat 1500 on the main Valencia-Madrid motorway, near Vallecas. An inscribed watch, gifted to him by a federation of fishermen in Gipuzkoa, was used to identify him.
Legacy and recognitionEdit
Iribarren had a highly theoretical approach grounded in detailed observation and assisted by experiment, and his work continues to underpin several coastal engineering design methods. His findings have been further developed by modern research, including contemporary design methods such as the Van der Meer formula, which expands Iribarren's methods to include allowance for irregular waves and the influence of storm duration.
He was honoured by the governments of Spain and France with the awards of Civil Order of Alfonso X, the Wise in 1959, The Order of Civil Merit, Chevalier (Knight) of the Legion of Honour and was elected as a member of the École navale. He was named an adopted son of Hondarribia for his work on the Bidasoa breakwater and the associated beach nourishment works there.
A bronze bust of Iribarren by the Spanish sculptor José Pérez Pérez "Peresejo" stands at the location of the Bidasoa works, erected there in 1969. A bust of Iribarren is also displayed in the Centro de Estudios y Experimentación de Obras Públicas building in Madrid. A street in Irún (Ramón Iribarren Kalea), and a promenade in Hondarribia (Ramón Iribarren Pasealekua Ibilbidea), are named after Iribarren. In 2017, a conference was held at the Institute of Engineering of Spain (Instituto de la Ingeniería de España, IIE) to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of Iribarren's passing.
- ^ a b "Segundo aniversario del Excelentísimo Señor Don Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles" [Second anniversary mass of Exc. Sr. D. Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles]. Diario ABC (in Spanish). Madrid, Spain. 19 February 1969. Retrieved 2 December 2022.
- ^ a b "Relación de académicos desde el año 1847 hasta el 2003" [List of academics from 1847 until 2003.] (PDF). Real Academia de Ciencias Exactas, Físicas y Naturales (in Spanish). October 2003. Retrieved 3 December 2022.
- ^ a b Marín Balda, J.L. (January 2001). "Tras la huella de Ramón Iribarren" [On the trail of Ramón Iribarren]. Revista de Obras Públicas (in Spanish) (3406): 7–10.
- ^ a b c d e f Pacheco, J.C. (2 December 2017). "Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles (1900–1967): el mar como pedagogía del paisaje" [Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles (1900–1967): the sea as a pedagogy of landscape]. Ingeniería Civil (in Spanish) (188): 105–113. ISSN 0213-8468. Retrieved 3 December 2022.
- ^ a b c d e "Auñamendi Eusko Entziklopedia, Fondo Bernardo Estornés Lasa (Eusko Ikaskuntza): Iribarren Cavanilles, Ramón" [Auñamendi Basque Encyclopedia, Bernardo Estornés Lasa Foundation (Society for Basque Studies): Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles] (in Basque). Retrieved 11 December 2022.
- ^ a b c d e f Goiricelaya, E. "Iribarren y la barra de Hondarribia" [Iribarren and the bar of Hondarribia] (in Spanish). Retrieved 5 December 2022.
- ^ a b Mancebo, M. (22 February 1967). "Ha muerto el ingeniero Iribarren" [The engineer Iribarren has died]. La voz de España (in Spanish). San Sebastián. Retrieved 11 December 2022.
- ^ a b c Battjes, J.A. (1974). "Surf similarity". Proceedings of The 14th International Conference on Coastal Engineering. Coastal Engineering Proceedings. Vol. 1. pp. 466–480. doi:10.9753/icce.v14.26.
- ^ a b c Schiereck, G.J.; Verhagen, H.J. (2016). Introduction to bed, bank and shoreline protection. Delft, The Netherlands: VSSD. ISBN 978-90-6562-306-5.
- ^ Lechuga Álvaro, A. "Iribarren: His research activity". CEDEX. Retrieved 11 December 2022.
- ^ Clavero, M.; Folgueras, P.; Diaz-Carrasco, P.; Ortega-Sanchez, M.; Losada, M.A. (30 December 2018). "A similarity parameter for breakwaters: The modified Iribarren number". Coastal Engineering Proceedings. 36 (36): 28. doi:10.9753/icce.v36.structures.28. S2CID 126545192. Retrieved 11 December 2022.
- ^ Holman, R.A. (March 1986). "Extreme value statistics for wave run-up on a natural beach". Coastal Engineering. 9 (6): 527–544. doi:10.1016/0378-3839(86)90002-5. Retrieved 11 December 2022.
- ^ a b d'Angremond, K.; van Roode, F.C. (2004). Breakwaters and closure dams. Delft: VSSD/Spon. ISBN 0-415-33256-7.
- ^ a b Van der Meer, J.W. (1988). Rock slopes and gravel beaches under wave attack (PhD). Delft University of Technology.
- ^ International Commission for the Study of Waves (8 November 1976). "Final report of the International Commission for the Study of Waves". Bulletin No. 25 of the Permanent International Association of Navigation Congresses (PIANC). 3. Retrieved 11 December 2022.
- ^ a b c d e f g h "Real Academia de la Historia Biografía: Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles" [Royal Academy of History Biography: Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles] (in Spanish). Retrieved 5 December 2022.
- ^ a b c d e f Marín Balda, J.L. (1999). "La costa Guipuzcoana, punto de partida de la personalidad ingenieril de D. Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles" [The Guipuzcoan coast, starting point of the engineering personality of Don Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles]. Nuevos Extractos de la Real Sociedad Bascongada de los Amigos del País (Delegación en Corte) (in Spanish) (D–C). Retrieved 17 December 2022.
- ^ Iribarren Cavanilles, R.; Nogales y Olano, C. (1949). "Protection des ports" [Protection of ports]. PIANC Congress 1949 (in French) (SII C.4): 31–80. Retrieved 4 December 2022.
- ^ Iribarren Cavanilles, R.; Nogales y Olano, C. (1953). "Classification des digues" [Classification of dikes]. PIANC Congress 1953 (in French) (SII Q.1): 45–66. Retrieved 4 December 2022.
- ^ a b c Iribarren Cavanilles, R. (1941). "Obras de abrigo de los puertos" [Protection works at ports]. Revista de Obras Públicas: Junta de Investigaciones Técnicas (in Spanish): 13–25. Retrieved 4 December 2022.
- ^ "Ramón Iribarren (1900–1967): ingeniería y mar – una mirada clásica" [Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles (1900–1967): engineering and the sea – a classic look]. Ingeniería Civil (in Spanish) (188). December 2017. ISSN 0213-8468. Retrieved 3 December 2022.
- ^ Iribarren Cavanilles, R.; Nogales y Olano, C. (1952). "Spanish practice in harbor design". Coastal Engineering Proceedings. 1(3) (13): 13. doi:10.9753/icce.v3.13. Retrieved 5 December 2022.
- ^ a b c "Iribarren resolvió con brillantez el problema de la barra de Hondarribia" [Iribarren brilliantly solved the problem of the Hondarribia bar]. El Diario Vasco (in Spanish). San Sebastián. 20 November 2016. Retrieved 16 December 2022.
- ^ Iribarren, R. (1949). "Étude des transports de sable causés par la houle: Application á la baie de Fontarabie-Hendaye, á l'embouchure de la Bidassoa" [Study of sand transport caused by swell: Application to the bay of Hondarribia-Hendaye, at the mouth of the Bidasoa]. Annales des Ponts et Chaussées (in French) (January-February 1949): 71–110.
- ^ Nizery, A. (1948). "Etude des déformations de la houle au voisinage d'une jetée" [Study of wave deformations in the vicinity of a pier] (PDF). La Houille Blanche (in French). 34: 628–633. doi:10.1051/lhb/1948005. Retrieved 17 December 2022.
- ^ Diaz de Villegas, J. (January 1961). "Presente y futuro de la Provincia española del Sahara" [Present and future of the Spanish Province of the Sahara] (PDF). Ejército: Revista ilustrada de las armas y servicios (in Spanish) (252): 8–16. Retrieved 19 December 2022.
- ^ Iribarren, R. (October 1942). "Wave action in relation to harbour protection works". Journal of the Dock and Harbour Authority.
- ^ Iribarren, R. (September 1946). "Les ouvrages de protection des ports" [Port protection works]. Annales des Ponts et Chaussées (in French) (September-October 1946): 521–542.
- ^ Ormazabal, M. (8 September 2002). "Culto al domador del oleaje: Una exposición glosa la trayectoria científica de Ramón Iribarren, el padre de la ingeniería marítima" [Worship to the wave tamer: An exhibition shows the scientific trajectory of Ramón Iribarren, the father of maritime engineering]. El País (in Spanish). San Sebastián. Retrieved 7 January 2023.
- ^ a b Iribarren, R.; Nogales y Olano, C. (1954). Obras Maritimas: Oleaje y Diques [Maritime Works: Waves and Dikes]. Madrid: Editorial Dossat. Retrieved 11 December 2022.
- ^ Iribarren, R. (1938). "Una Formula para el calculo de los diques de escollera" [A Formula for the design of breakwaters.]. Revista de Obras Publicas (in Spanish).
- ^ Hudson, R.Y. (1959). "Laboratory investigation of rubble-mound breakwaters". Journal of the Waterways and Harbor Research Division. 85 (3): 93–121. doi:10.1061/JWHEAU.0000142. Retrieved 11 December 2022.
- ^ Hudson, R.Y. (1961). "Closure to "Hudson on Breakwaters"". Transactions of the American Society of Civil Engineers. 126 (4): 536–541. doi:10.1061/TACEAT.0008345. Retrieved 11 December 2022.
- ^ Iribarren Cavanilles, R. (1965). "Formule pour le calcul des diques en enrochements naturels ou elements artificiels" [A formula for the design of dikes in natural rockfill or artificial elements]. PIANC XXI International Congress, Stockholm (in French).
- ^ Iribarren Cavanilles, R.; Nogales y Olano, C. (1 April 1951). "Limiting batter (slope) between the breaking and reflection of waves". The Bulletin of the Beach Erosion Board, United States Army Corps of Engineers. 5 (2): 1–12. Retrieved 5 December 2022.
- ^ Iribarren, R.; Nogales y Olano, C. (1964). Obras Maritimas: Oleaje y Diques [Maritime Works: Waves and Dikes]. Madrid: Editorial Dossat. Retrieved 7 January 2023.
- ^ Carreño, F.M. (11 June 2018). "El adiós de España a Suiza 54: la Falange, el telegrama fantasma y un dentista al mando" [Spain's farewell to Switzerland 54: The Falange, the phantom telegram and a dentist in charge]. Marca (in Spanish). Madrid. Retrieved 21 December 2022.
- ^ Etxepare, L.; García Nieto, F. (2018). "La depuración franquista en la administración durante la posguerra: el caso de Luis Vallet de Montano" [The Francoist purification of the government during the post-war period: the case of Luis Vallet de Montano]. Sancho el Sabio: Revista de cultura e investigación vasca (in Spanish): 177–204. doi:10.55698/ss.v0i0.204.
- ^ Sánchez, O. (27 December 2016). "Se cumplen 50 años del fallecimiento de Ramón Iribarren" [50 years since the death of Ramón Iribarren]. Conecta Bidasoa (in Spanish). Hondarribia. Retrieved 21 December 2022.
- ^ Losada, M.A. (2001). "Formulas for the calculation of breakwaters". Grupo de Puertos y Costas, Universidad de Granada.
- ^ van der Meer, J.W. (2021). "Rock Armour Slope Stability under Wave Attack; the Van der Meer Formula revisited". Journal of Coastal and Hydraulic Structures. 1 (8). doi:10.48438/jchs.2021.0008.
- ^ Roubos, J.J.; Glasbergen, T.; Hofland, B.; Bricker, J.D.; Zijlema, M.; Esteban, M.; Tissier, M.F.S. (2021). "Formulation of a Surf-Similarity Parameter to Predict Tsunami Characteristics at the Coast". Journal of Coastal and Hydraulic Structures. 1 (9). doi:10.48438/jchs.2021.0009.
- ^ Glasbergen, T. (2017). Characteristics of incoming tsunamis for the design of coastal structures (MSc). Delft University of Technology.
- ^ "Hijos adoptivos de la ciudad" [Adopted sons of Hondarribia] (in Spanish). Retrieved 5 December 2022.
- ^ "Homenaje al ingeniero Iribarren" [Tribute to engineer Iribarren] (PDF) (in Spanish). Retrieved 6 December 2022.
- ^ "Jornada en el IIE sobre Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles, Ingeniero de Puertos y Costas" [Conference at the IIE on Ramón Iribarren Cavanilles, Port and Coastal Engineer] (in Spanish). 3 March 2017. Retrieved 5 December 2022.