Investigation of the Liverpool Bay mixing front using POLCOMS

Norman, D.L.; Brown, J.M. ORCID:; Amoudry, L.O.; Souza, A.J.. 2014 Investigation of the Liverpool Bay mixing front using POLCOMS. Southampton, National Oceanography Centre, 38pp. (National Oceanography Centre Internal Document, No. 11)

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Liverpool Bay, northwest UK, is a region of freshwater influence and hypertidal conditions. The river inflow from the 3 large estuary systems (Dee, Mersey and Ribble) forms a coastal front that moves < 10 km in response to semi-diurnal tidal straining and < 35 km due to the spring-neap cycle. The time variability of the density gradients in this coastal region are mainly controlled by salinity. Coastal observations are used in this study to improve the numerical simulation of the exchange process occurring at this front through improved spatial structure and temporal variability. A decade of Conductivity Temperature Depth (CTD) sensor observations were collected during cruises across a nearshore grid of monitoring stations. These data are used in addition to fixed mooring data that are near-continuous in time to validate numerical simulations using the 1-way nested Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory Coastal Ocean Modelling System (POLCOMS) at ~1.8km and 180m horizontal resolution. A downscaled simulation is used to investigate the influence of model resolution, inclusion of wetting and drying, diffusivity, turbulence advection and the influence of model boundary and initial conditions for select cruise periods in 2008. This year is chosen as a typical year with periods of calm and stormy conditions with variable river influence to investigate the seasonal frontal structure. A method to validate the spatial structure of the front is presented demonstrating the importance of a fine-resolution grid and improved physics to capture the details.

Item Type: Publication - Report
Date made live: 27 Aug 2014 08:43 +0 (UTC)

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