Dr. Rapaglia works on several different lines of research. The first line of
research involves studies of Submarine Groundwater Discharge. Groundwater flows directly
into the sea anywhere an aquifer with a positive hydraulic head is hydraulically
connected to a surface water body. Groundwater is inherently enriched in many
contaminants and, therefore, it is often a major pathway for these contaminants to enter
the ocean. However, as it is inherently difficult to measure, the input of contaminants
into coastal zones through groundwater is often disregarded as an important source. Dr.
Rapaglia's research focuses on quantifying this flow of groundwater and associated
contaminants into the coastal zones, including the better understanding of geochemical
processes occurring in the coastal zone. His lab utilizes various techniques including
manual seepage meters, radionuclides, and geographic information systems (GIS) to
accomplish our research goals on a local, regional, and global scale. 

A second line of research involves sedimentary changes due to vessel navigation in ports
and harbors. Large vessels generate waves of sufficient energy to disturb sediments both
within and near shipping channels. When disturbed, contaminants maybe re-mobilized from
these sediments and released back into the water column. Dr. Rapaglia's lab uses
pressure sensors to better understand the types of waves generated by these vessels and
their impact on the environment. He seeks to understand how re-mobilized contaminants can
effect shellfish species. Dr. Rapaglia has other projects including studying salt water
intrusion into coastal aquifers and researching salt marshes, sea level rise, and storm
parameters. 

Degrees: Post-doctoral researcher 2008-2011: Christian Albrechts University of Kiel,
Germany: “Future Ocean Excellence Cluster"; 

Post-doctoral researcher 2007-2008: National Research Council of Italy’s Marine Science
Institute; 

PhD 2007: Marine and Atmospheric Science, School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, Stony
Brook University; 

M.S. 2004: Marine Environmental Science, School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, Stony
Brook University; 

B.S. 2001: Geography and Environmental Science, University of Mary Washington. 

Articles

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Impact of Sea-Level Rise on Saltwater Intrusion Length into the Coastal Aquifer, Partido de La Costa, Argentina (with Silvina Carretero, Henry Bokuniewicz, and Eduardo Kruse), Biology Faculty Publications (2013)

The impact to water resources of a potential 1-m rise in sea level against the...

 

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Sediment Resuspension by Ship Wakes in the Venice Lagoon (with Morgan Gelinas, Henry Bokuniewicz, and Kamazima M.M. Lwiza), Biology Faculty Publications (2013)

Observations of Bernoulli wakes were recorded and analyzed for 22 passing ships in the industrial...

 

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Quantification of Submarine Groundwater Discharge and Optimal Radium Sampling Distribution in the Lesina Lagoon, Italy (with Sotirios Koukoulas, Luca Zaggia, Michal Lichter, Georgia Manfe, and Athanasios T. Vafeidis), Biology Faculty Publications (2012)

Performing a mass balance of radium isotopes is a commonly employed method for quantifying...

 

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Isotopic, Geophysical and Biogeochemical Investigation of Submarine Groundwater Discharge: IAEA-UNESCO Intercomparison Exercise at Mauritius Island (with P. P. Povinec, W. C. Burnett, A. Beck, H. Bokuniewicz, M. Charette, M. E. Gonneea, M. Groening, T. Ishitobi, E. Kontar, L. Liong Wee Kwong, D. E. P. Marie, W. S. Moore, J. A. Oberdorfer, R. Peterson, R. Ramessur, T. Stieglitz, and Z. Top), Biology Faculty Publications (2012)

Submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) into a shallow lagoon on the west coast of Mauritius Island...

 

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Salt Marsh Accretion and Storm Tide Variation: an Example from a Barrier Island in the North Sea (with Mark Schuerch, V. Liebetrau, A. Vafeidis, and K. Reise), Biology Faculty Publications (2012)

We reconstruct past accretion rates of a salt marsh on the island of Sylt, Germany,...

 

Popular Press

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New 'Cities By The Sea' Study Abroad Program Offers Rich Mix of Science and Culture, Sacred Heart University News Story (2013)

Five Sacred Heart University students gained extensive insight into the field of coastal management and...