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Mean Circulation in the Coastal Ocean Off Northeastern North America from a Regional-scale Ocean Model : Volume 11, Issue 6 (08/12/2014)

By Chen, K.

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Book Id: WPLBN0004020821
Format Type: PDF Article :
File Size: Pages 36
Reproduction Date: 2015

Title: Mean Circulation in the Coastal Ocean Off Northeastern North America from a Regional-scale Ocean Model : Volume 11, Issue 6 (08/12/2014)  
Author: Chen, K.
Volume: Vol. 11, Issue 6
Language: English
Subject: Science, Ocean, Science
Collections: Periodicals: Journal and Magazine Collection, Copernicus GmbH
Publication Date:
Publisher: Copernicus Gmbh, Göttingen, Germany
Member Page: Copernicus Publications


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He, R., & Chen, K. (2014). Mean Circulation in the Coastal Ocean Off Northeastern North America from a Regional-scale Ocean Model : Volume 11, Issue 6 (08/12/2014). Retrieved from

Description: Physical Oceanography Department, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 266 Woods Hole Road, MS# 21, Woods Hole, MA 02543, USA. A regional-scale ocean model was used to hindcast the coastal circulation over the Middle Atlantic Bight (MAB) and Gulf of Maine (GOM) from 2004 to 2013. The model was nested inside a data assimilative global ocean model that provided initial and open boundary conditions. Realistic atmospheric forcing, tides and observed river runoff were also used to drive the model. Hindcast solutions were compared against observations, which included coastal sea levels, satellite altimetry sea surface height, temperature and salinity time series in the GOM, glider transects in the MAB, and observed mean depth-averaged velocities by Lentz (2008a). Good agreements with observations suggest that the hindcast model is capable of capturing the major circulation variability in the MAB and GOM. Time- and space-continuous hindcast fields were used to depict the mean circulation, along- and cross-shelf transport and the associated momentum balances. The hindcast confirms the presence of the equatorward mean shelf circulation, which varies from 2.33 Sv at Scotian Shelf to 0.22 Sv near Cape Hatteras. Using the 200 m isobath as the shelf/slope boundary, the mean cross-shelf transport calculations indicate that the shelfbreak segments off the Gulf of Maine (including the southern flank of Georges Bank and the Northeast Channel) and Cape Hatteras are the major sites for shelf water export. The momentum analysis reveals that the along-shelf sea level difference from Nova Scotia to Cape Hatteras is about 0.36 m. The nonlinear advection, stress, and horizontal viscosity terms all contribute to the ageostrophic circulation in the along-isobath direction, whereas the nonlinear advection plays a dominant role in determining the ageostrophic current in the cross-isobath direction.

Mean circulation in the coastal ocean off northeastern North America from a regional-scale ocean model

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