Wave Cut platforms and notches A wave-cut platform is the narrow flat area often seen at the base of a sea cliff caused by the action of the waves.
This type of wave causes the erosion to the cliffs
operate in storm conditions
are created from big, strong waves when the wind is strong and has been blowing for a long time
occur when wave energy is high and the wave has travelled for a long time
backwash is stronger than the swash.
High tide Low tide How a wave cut platform is formed It forms after destructive waves hit against the cliff face, causing undercutting between the high and low tide marks, as a result of corrasion and hydraulic action, creating a wave-cut notch. This notch then enlarges into a cave. Eventually this cave will collapse and a platform will be formed.
Destructive waves at an exposed coast erode a steep coastal slope through processes like hydraulic action and corrasion. The waves erode along lines of weakness in the rock face to form a notch. Continued erosion enlarges the notch and causes its roof to collapse, and a cliff is formed.
Further undercutting at the base of the cliff results in an overhanging cliff which eventually collapses. As the steep cliff retreats inwards, a flat terrace at the foot of the cliff is exposed --- wave-cut platform. The eroded materials which are transported away may be deposited in the sea to form an offshore terrace.
It forms after destructive waves hit against the cliff face, causing undercutting between the high and low water marks, mainly as a result of corrasion and hydraulic action, creating a wave-cut notch. Erosion is greatest when waves break at the foot of a cliff. This causes erosion at the base of the cliff. This creates a wave-cut notch in the base of the cliff. As the notch increases in size the weight of the cliffs above become too much and the cliff collapses. The eroded material will provide temporary protection for the cliff behind. However, once it has been removed by the sea this process will occur again. Where cliffs are made of more resistant material, wave cut platforms will be created.
1. Original position of cliff 2. Cliff retreats 3. Present position of cliff 4. Sea level (high tide) 5. Wave cut notch at foot of cliffs 6. Wave cut platform How a wave cut platform retreats