Gibraltar experiment : a plan for dynamic and kinematic investigations of strait mixing, exchange and turbulence
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LocationStrait of Gibraltar
The flow through the Strait of Gibraltar has always held a special fascination for oceanographers. Attempts to understand and measure the strong currents in the Strait stimulated many of the early advances in oceanography (Deacon, 1971). Over the centuries, the focus of scientific investigations has shifted from understanding how the mass budget of the Mediterranean is maintained in the presence of the strong inflow of Atlantic water through the Strait of Gibraltar, to observing the outflow of Mediterranean water over the Gibraltar sill, to measuring the two-layer. exchange of Atlantic inflow and Mediterranean outflow through the Strait. In the past few years the focus has again shifted to the study of how the dynamical constraints for flow through a narrow and shallow strait act to control the amount of exchange between the Atlantic and Mediterranean basins. To investigate the dynamics of flow through a strait, a year-long field experiment has been designed to measure the flows through the Strait of Gibraltar, including their time variability over tidal to seasonal time scales, and to assess the importance of friction, mixing, rotation, and nonlinear processes in controlling the exchange through the Strait. This field program, called the Gibraltar Experiment, will be carried out by a group of American, Spanish, Moroccan, Canadian and French scientists during the period from Fall 1985 to Fall 1986.
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