Significant progress has been made towards understanding circulation dynamics/hydrodynamics and associated sediment transport in coastal and open estuarine environments. However, comparable research efforts in complex, lagoonal estuaries has only seen limited success. In particular, modeling of hydrodynamics and the transport of mixed sand-mud (heterogeneous) sediments, including efforts to model storm surge and associated coastal erosion in these complex regions suffers from a paucity of high-resolution, long-term data. These complex systems are common along the U.S. coastlines, representing approximately 13% of the world’s shorelines, and present a great challenge to both coastal planners as well as potential military operations. The new monitoring array in the Currituck Sound will provide critical baseline data to improve our understanding of hydrodynamics and sediment dynamics — as well as changes in water quality and shoreline stability — in complex estuaries, providing quantitative improvements for existing estuarine models.