Dr Lucy Bricheno

Marine Systems Modelling
+44 (0)151 795 4958

Dr Lucy Bricheno is an oceanographer based at NOC in Liverpool. She is experienced in hydrodynamic and wave modelling, particularly representing interface processes, and model coupling. In 2010 Lucy began working in the marine systems modelling group with Professor Judith Wolf, with a focus on developing coastal modelling capability.

Her main science interests are at the messy 'edges' between the atmosphere/ocean and ocean/coast, where the boundaries between disciplines break down. One of Lucy's goals is a joined-up momentum budget from the atmosphere to sea bed, with coupling processes properly resolved, rather than tuned and parametrised. A second is an equally seamless freshwater cycle, without the 'leaks' that occur at estuaries, and the sea surface. The UK's modelling capability is mature in its component parts, but needs work in linkages. Our world-leading coastal modelling also has great potential to be applied outside of the UK and Europe.

As a visiting researcher at the Polytechnic University Catalonia she was trained in the use of the Weather Forecasting and Research model (WRF), and coupled this to POLCOMS and WAM. Now, in collaboration with CEH and the UK Met Office she is involved with the UK Environmental Prediction project, to implement these coupling approaches in the community model system of NEMO-WaveWatch III and the Met Office (UM) Unified Model atmosphere.

As part of the Department for International Development (DFID) funded ESPA deltas project, Lucy designed and implemented the FVCOM model to investigate river salinities and water levels in Bangladesh. Again, the focus has been at the coast, and further inland - working at the very limit of what the Finite Volume Coastal Ocean Model was designed to do.

Lucy Says: "I am interested in capacity building works that would apply NOC's modelling capability to simulate challenging coastal systems worldwide."


Science Focus on coastal ocean modelling, downscaling, and model coupling; Improved forecasting, flood risk, changing wave and surge climate, water security and salinisation.

Experienced with numerous models both structured and unstructured; atmosphere, ocean and spectral wave modelling; multi-core, linux, supercomputing; model development and implementation, pre- and post-processing;

Current projects

ESPA Deltas: Ecosystem services for poverty alleviation.

This project will involve producing hydrodynamic modelling (using FVCOM) for Bangladesh, concentrating on the Ganges-Brahmaputra Delta. The physical modelling will be combined with fisheries, river and land-use models.


Unstructured FVCOM model for the Bangladesh delta

Movie of hourly salinity:



Rises AM: Responses to coastal climate change: Innovative Strategies for high End Scenarios -Adaptation and Mitigation

Forecasting the future wave climate around Europe in collaboration with UPC and HZG. The FP7 EC commissioned Rises AM project was designed to assess coastal vulnerability to waves around North West Europe. For Rises I have generated a 223 year data set describing the global wave climate, and an equivalent downscaled European data set at very high resolution for future climate scenarios representing a range of high-end sea level rise projections.  These outputs will inform coastal flood risk projections (following on from UKCP09), and help us understand the impacts of dynamical downscaling.


United Kingdom Environmental Prediction

Developing a high resolution (1km scale) coupled atmosphere-ocean-wave model for improved weather and coastal prediction around the UK. In collaboration with CEH and the UK Met Office. I am Work package lead for coupled wave-ocean-atmosphere component.

Aim to transfer the coupled POLCOMS WAM developments into the NEMO-WaveWatch III code that has been used operationally at the Met Office. UKEP is a prototype model that brings together existing atmosphere, marine (coastal ocean, wave, and biogeochemisty), hydrological and land surface modelling components to demonstrate the advantages of such coupled, interdisciplinary research.



National Centre for Ocean Forecasting (NCOF) Waves working group

A special interest group combining expertise on surface waves from around the UK



Completed projects

Field_AC: Fluxes, Interactions and Environment at the Land-ocean boundary. Downscaling, Assimilation and Coupling

Coastal scale modelling, downscaling, air-sea interaction and model coupling. This project is concentrating on 4 field sites; Liverpool Bay; The Catalan Coast; The German Bight and Venice Lagoon.

Coupled modelling is important way to improve physics at interfaces between the ocean/atmosphere/land.  As part of the European FP7 Field_AC project (2010-2012), I developed a coupled modelling system, resulting in a  pre-operational modelling tool for shelf seas. Combining atmospheric, hydrodynamic, wave, hydrological, ecosystem, and sediment transport models.

Downscaling MyOcean data for Catalan Coast coupled modelling

Natural Sea Bed Disturbance
I developed the state-of-the-art POLCOMS-WAM model to inform CEFAS regarding seabed disturbance around the English Channel / Southern North Sea. This project produced a climatological wave and current data for the entire UK continental shelf from 1999-2008. The ten year hindcast reflects wave and surge climate, together with sea bed conditions, wave and current generated bottom disturbances. This 13km resolution data has recently been published through BODC, and is available for download here:



Committee and Board Memberships: 


Additional responsibilities and committee membership

Member of the GODAE COSS (Coastal Ocean and Shelf Seas) international Task Team (2015- present)

Scientific Computing Advisory Group member (2014-presen



Cannaby, H.; Palmer, M.D.; Howard, T.; Bricheno, L.; Calvert, D.; Krijnen, J.; Wood, R.; Tinker, J.; Bunney, C.; Harle, J.; Saulter, A.; O'Neill, C.; Bellingham, C.; Lowe, J.. 2016 Projected sea level rise and changes in extreme storm surge and wave events during the 21st century in the region of Singapore. Ocean Science, 12 (3). 613-632.10.5194/os-12-613-2016
Payo, Andres; Mukhopadhyay, Anirban; Hazra, Sugata; Ghosh, Tuhin; Ghosh, Subhajit; Brown, Sally; Nicholls, Robert J.; Bricheno, Lucy; Wolf, Judith; Kay, Susan; Lázár, Attila N.; Haque, Anisul. 2016 Projected changes in area of the Sundarban mangrove forest in Bangladesh due to SLR by 2100. Climate Change, 139 (2). 279-291.10.1007/s10584-016-1769-z
Bricheno, Lucy M.; Wolf, Judith; Islam, Saiful. 2016 Tidal intrusion within a mega delta: an unstructured grid modelling approach. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, 182 (A). 12-26.10.1016/j.ecss.2016.09.014
Kay, S.; Caesar, J.; Wolf, J.; Bricheno, L.; Nicholls, R. J.; Saiful Islam, A.K.M.; Haque, A.; Pardaens, A.; Lowe, J.A.. 2015 Modelling the increased frequency of extreme sea levels in the Ganges–Brahmaputra–Meghna delta due to sea level rise and other effects of climate change. Environmental Science: Processes & Impacts, 17 (7). 1311-1322.10.1039/C4EM00683F
Bricheno, Lucy M.; Wolf, Judith; Aldridge, John. 2015 Distribution of natural disturbance due to wave and tidal bed currents around the UK. Continental Shelf Research, 109. 67-77.10.1016/j.csr.2015.09.013
Aldridge, J.N.; Parker, E.R.; Bricheno, L.M.; Green, S.L.; van der Molen, J.. 2015 Assessment of the physical disturbance of the northern European Continental shelf seabed by waves and currents. Continental Shelf Research, 108. 121-140.10.1016/j.csr.2015.03.004
Bricheno, Lucy M.; Wolf, Judith; Brown, Jennifer M.. 2014 Impacts of high resolution model downscaling in coastal regions. Continental Shelf Research, 87. 7-16.10.1016/j.csr.2013.11.007
O'Hara Murray, Rory B.; Thorne, Peter D.; van den Bremer, Ton S.; Bricheno, Lucy M.; Sparrow, Kathryn H.; Wright, Jennifer C.. 2014 Briefing: Young Coastal Scientists and Engineers Conference 2013. Proceedings of the ICE - Maritime Engineering, 167 (2). 57-67.10.1680/maen.13.00017
Stansby, P.; Chini, N.; Apsley, D.; Borthwick, A.; Bricheno, L.; Horrilo-Caraballo, J.; McCabe, M.; Reeve, D.; Rogers, B.; Saulter, A.; Scott, A.; Wilson, C.; Wolf, J.; Yan, K.. 2013 An integrated model system for coastal flood prediction with a case history for Walcott, UK, on 9 November 2007. Journal of Flood Risk Management, 6 (3). 229-252.10.1111/jfr3.12001
Bricheno, Lucy M.; Soret, Albert; Wolf, Judith; Jorba, Oriol; Baldasano, Jose Maria. 2013 Effect of High-Resolution Meteorological Forcing on Nearshore Wave and Current Model Performance. Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology, 30 (6). 1021-1037.10.1175/JTECH-D-12-00087.1
Brown, Jennifer M.; Chesher, Tim J.; Beveridge, Andrew J.; Shafiai, Siti H.; O'Hara Murray, Rory B.; Smyth, Thomas A.G.; Bricheno, Lucy M.; Way, Oliver G.. 2012 Briefing: Young Coastal Scientists and Engineers Conference 2011. Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers Maritime Engineering, 165 (1). 7-20.10.1680/maen.2012.165.1.7

Book section

Bricheno, Lucy; Cannaby, Heather; Howard, Tom; McInnes, Kathleen; Palmer, Matthew. 2015 Extreme Sea Level Projections. In: Marzin, C.; et al, ., (eds.)Singapore’s Second National Climate Change Study – Phase 1. Singapore, Meteorological Office of Singapore, Chap.9, 39pp.