Bret M. Webb, Ph.D., P.E., D.CE
University of South Alabama
150 Jaguar Drive, SH3142
Mobile, AL 36688 USA
Phone: (251) 460-6174
Fax: (251) 461-1400

Research Positions

Currently seeking multiple graduate students to fill positions at the MS, PhD, and Postdoc levels. Research topics include: living shorelines, beach and tidal inlet dynamics, barrier island response to extreme events, groundwater impacts to coastal lagoons, and infrastructure resilience. Research assistantships are available. Click here for more information.

Current Research Assistants

PhD Students
Garland Pennison


MS Students
Kelsey Carpenter
Sean McQuagge
Elizabeth Winter
Jackie Wittmann


Undergraduate Students
Ian Cox

Former Students

MSCE Students
Patrick Hautau (2018)
Marshall Hayden (2018)
Kate Haynes (2018)
Justin Lowlavar (2017)
Bryan Groza (2016)
Kari Servold (2015)
Chris Marr (2013)
Richard Allen (2013)
Miyuki Matthews (2012)


Post Docs
Jon Risinger
Jungwoo Lee

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Katrina Cut

Check out this month’s edition of the Journal of Ocean Technology for an article about the Jag Ski. This is the first comprehensive peer-reviewed publication detailing the components and capabilities of the South Alabama Jag Ski research platform. The article provides an overview of the equipment and instrumentation, a justification for its use, and representative results from field deployments, which showcase the capabilities and utility of specific instrument packages. You can download the article free of charge from the JOT web site… just follow the link above or click on the image at right for a jump to the current issue. A recommended citation is provided below.


  • Webb, B. M. A personal watercraft-based system for coastal ocean mapping. Journal of Ocean Technology7(2), 47 – 68.



It’s been more than one month since our last field experiment at Katrina Cut, and a lot has happened since that time. Thompson Engineering has made significant progress on the breach closure in the past few weeks {link to a flickr gallery}; BP has installed a fitted cap on the MC 252 well head that appears to be staunching the flow for now; and cleanup crews are pulling up their tent stakes and heading away from the beaches in Alabama (for now).  Now that we are mostly done dealing with the visible stuff, only time (and lots of research) will tell how much the unseen will effect the environment.

In the meantime, here is a three-dimensional rendering of interpolated bathymetry at Katrina Cut as of June 24, 2010.  Of course, things will have changed substantially by the time construction of the breach closure is complete.  A follow-up trip for monitoring is planned for early fall.