Modeled alongshore circulation and force balances onshore of a submarine canyon
Hansen, Jeff E.
List, Jeffrey H.
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Alongshore force balances, including the role of nonlinear advection, in the shoaling and surf zones onshore of a submarine canyon are investigated using a numerical modeling system (Delft3D/SWAN). The model is calibrated with waves and alongshore flows recorded over a period of 1.5 months at 26 sites along the 1.0, 2.5, and 5.0 m depth contours spanning about 2 km of coast. Field observation-based estimates of the alongshore pressure and radiation-stress gradients are reproduced well by the model. Model simulations suggest that the alongshore momentum balance is between the sum of the pressure and radiation-stress gradients and the sum of the nonlinear advective terms and bottom stress, with the remaining terms (e.g., wind stress and turbulent mixing) being negligible. The simulations also indicate that unexplained residuals in previous field-based estimates of the momentum balance may be owing to the neglect of the nonlinear advective terms, which are similar in magnitude to the sum of the forcing (pressure and radiations stress gradients) and to the bottom stress.
Author Posting. © American Geophysical Union, 2015. This article is posted here by permission of American Geophysical Union for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 120 (2015): 1887–1903, doi:10.1002/2014JC010555.
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