The anomalous tides near Broad Sound

Middleton, Jason H.; Buchwald, V.T.; Huthnance, John M. ORCID: 1984 The anomalous tides near Broad Sound. Continental Shelf Research, 3 (4). 359-381.

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Observations of tidal current and height, in conjunction with theoretical mathematical models are used to investigate the propagation of the tide near Broad Sound, a narrowing estuary situated on a wide section of continental shelf toward the southern end of the Great Barrier Reef. The observations indicate that the dense offshore reefs severely inhibit tidal flow, with the result that tides flood toward Broad Sound from the north and from the south, along the main lagoon. There is a local magnification of the semi-diurnal tides within Broad Sound itself. Models of flow across reefs confirm the effectiveness of dense, shallow, and broad reefs in acting as a barrier to the tide. The diffraction of tides through large gaps in the reef is modelled using conformal mapping techniques and with the inclusion of energy leakage, the diffraction model predicts magnification of the semi-diurnal tidal heights by a factor of about 4 and a phase lag of 3 h on the shelf near Broad Sound, these values being consistent with observation. The observed convergence of the tide close to, and within Broad Sound itself is consistent with the proximity of the semi-diurnal tidal period to the natural period for flow in Broad Sound, considered as a narrowing estuary. This results in further amplification, by an additional factor of about 1.5, so that the tides in Broad Sound are increased by a factor of between 5 and 6, altogether, compared with those elsewhere on the east Australian coast.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
Programmes: POL Programmes
ISSN: 02784343
Date made live: 02 Jul 2013 10:45 +0 (UTC)

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