Chant Robert J.

No Thumbnail Available
Last Name
First Name
Robert J.

Search Results

Now showing 1 - 8 of 8
  • Dataset
    Data and numerical methods for determining the dynamics and kinematics of Newark Bay, NJ
    ( 2019-07-30) Corlett, W. Bryce ; Geyer, W. Rockwell ; Chant, Robert J. ; Ralston, David K. ; Sommerfield, Christopher K.
    These observational data and numerical methods were used to investigate the subtidal salt balance of Newark Bay, a sub-estuarine network connected to the Hudson River estuary through New York Harbor. The moored data were collected in 2008 by Chant and Sommerfield, and in 2016 by Corlett, Geyer, and Ralston. Corlett devised the included numerical methods. Shipboard measurements of the vertical salinity profile near each mooring were used to reconstruct the tidally-varying vertical salinity profile from near-bed and near-surface salinity measurements at each mooring. The effects of tidal processes, such as frontal advection, on the exchange flow were investigated by applying the isohaline total exchange flow (TEF) framework to the mooring-based observations in multiple reaches of the estuarine network. In addition, a TEF-based salt balance was derived for the purpose of directly comparing the TEF framework with the standard Eulerian framework.
  • Article
    Wave generation, dissipation, and disequilibrium in an embayment with complex bathymetry
    (American Geophysical Union, 2018-10-04) Chen, Jia-Lin ; Ralston, David K. ; Geyer, W. Rockwell ; Sommerfield, Christopher K. ; Chant, Robert J.
    Heterogeneous, sharply varying bathymetry is common in estuaries and embayments, and complex interactions between the bathymetry and wave processes fundamentally alter the distribution of wave energy. The mechanisms that control the generation and dissipation of wind waves in an embayment with heterogeneous, sharply varying bathymetry are evaluated with an observational and numerical study of the Delaware Estuary. Waves in the lower bay depend on both local wind forcing and remote wave forcing from offshore, but elsewhere in the estuary waves are controlled by the local winds and the response of the wavefield to bathymetric variability. Differences in the wavefield with wind direction highlight the impacts of heterogeneous bathymetry and limited fetch. Under the typical winter northwest wind conditions waves are fetch‐limited in the middle estuary and reach equilibrium with local water depth only in the lower bay. During southerly wind conditions typical of storms, wave energy is near equilibrium in the lower bay, and midestuary waves are attenuated by the combination of whitecapping and bottom friction, particularly over the steep, longitudinal shoals. Although the energy dissipation due to bottom friction is generally small relative to whitecapping, it becomes significant where the waves shoal abruptly due to steep bottom topography. In contrast, directional spreading keeps wave heights in the main channel significantly less than local equilibrium. The wave disequilibrium in the deep navigational channel explains why the marked increase in depth by dredging of the modern channel has had little impact on wave conditions.
  • Article
    Tidal and spring-neap variations in horizontal dispersion in a partially mixed estuary
    (American Geophysical Union, 2008-07-18) Geyer, W. Rockwell ; Chant, Robert J. ; Houghton, R.
    A sequence of dye releases in the Hudson River estuary provide a quantitative assessment of horizontal dispersion in a partially mixed estuary. Dye was released in the bottom boundary layer on 4 separate occasions, with varying tidal phase and spring-neap conditions. The three-dimensional distribution of dye was monitored by two vessels with in situ, profiling fluorometers. The three-dimensional spreading of the dye was estimated by calculating the time derivative of the second moment of the dye in the along-estuary, cross-estuary and vertical directions. The average along-estuary dispersion rate was about 100 m2/s, but maximum rates up to 700 m2/s occurred during ebb tides, and minimum rates occurred during flood. Vertical shear dispersion was the principal mechanism during neap tides, but transverse shear dispersion became more important during springs. Suppression of mixing across the pycnocline limited the vertical extent of the patch in all but the maximum spring-tide conditions, with vertical diffusivities in the pycnocline estimated at 4 × 10−5 m2/s during neaps. The limited vertical extent of the dye patch limited the dispersion of the dye relative to the overall estuarine dispersion rate, which was an order of magnitude greater than that of the dye. This study indicates that the effective dispersion of waterborne material in an estuary depends sensitively on its vertical distribution as well as the phase of the spring-neap cycle.
  • Article
    Effects of locally generated wind waves on the momentum budget and subtidal exchange in a coastal plain estuary
    (American Geophysical Union, 2019-01-28) Pareja‐Roman, L. Fernando ; Chant, Robert J. ; Ralston, David K.
    A numerical model with a vortex force formalism is used to study the role of wind waves in the momentum budget and subtidal exchange of a shallow coastal plain estuary, Delaware Bay. Wave height and age in the bay have a spatial distribution that is controlled by bathymetry and fetch, with implications for the surface drag coefficient in young, underdeveloped seas. Inclusion of waves in the model leads to increases in the surface drag coefficient by up to 30% with respect to parameterizations in which surface drag is only a function of wind speed, in agreement with recent observations of air‐sea fluxes in estuaries. The model was modified to prevent whitecapping wave dissipation from generating breaking forces since that contribution is integrally equivalent to the wind stress. The proposed adjustment is consistent with previous studies of wave‐induced nearshore currents and with additional parameterizations for breaking forces in the model. The mean momentum balance during a simulated wind event was mainly between the pressure gradient force and surface stress, with negligible contributions by vortex, wave breaking (i.e., depth‐induced), and Stokes‐Coriolis forces. Modeled scenarios with realistic Delaware bathymetry suggest that the subtidal bay‐ocean exchange at storm time scales is sensitive to wave‐induced surface drag coefficient, wind direction, and mass transport due to the Stokes drift. Results herein are applicable to shallow coastal systems where the typical wave field is young (i.e., wind seas) and modulated by bathymetry.
  • Article
    The impact of wind forcing on the thermal wind shear of a river plume
    (American Geophysical Union, 2019-10-31) Mazzini, Piero L. F. ; Chant, Robert J. ; Scully, Malcolm E. ; Wilkin, John L. ; Hunter, Elias J. ; Nidzieko, Nicholas J.
    A 38-day long time series obtained using a combination of moored Wirewalkers equipped with conductivity-temperature-depth profilers and bottom-mounted and subsurface acoustic Doppler current profilers provided detailed high-resolution observations that resolved near-surface velocity and vertical and cross-shelf density gradients of the Chesapeake Bay plume far field. This unprecedented data set allowed for a detailed investigation of the impact of wind forcing on the thermal wind shear of a river plume. Our results showed that thermal wind balance was a valid approximation for the cross-shelf momentum balance over the entire water column during weak winds (|𝜏w 𝑦 | < 0.075 Pa), and it was also valid within the interior during moderate downwelling (−0.125< 𝜏w 𝑦 < −0.075 Pa). Stronger wind conditions, however, resulted in the breakdown of the thermal wind balance in the Chesapeake Bay plume, with thermal wind shear overestimating the observed shear during downwelling and underestimating during upwelling conditions. A momentum budget analysis suggests that viscous stresses from wind-generated turbulence are mainly responsible for the generation of ageostrophic shear.
  • Article
    Estuarine boundary layer mixing processes : insights from dye experiments
    (American Meteorological Society, 2007-07) Chant, Robert J. ; Geyer, W. Rockwell ; Houghton, Robert ; Hunter, Elias J. ; Lerczak, James A.
    A series of dye releases in the Hudson River estuary elucidated diapycnal mixing rates and temporal variability over tidal and fortnightly time scales. Dye was injected in the bottom boundary layer for each of four releases during different phases of the tide and of the spring–neap cycle. Diapycnal mixing occurs primarily through entrainment that is driven by shear production in the bottom boundary layer. On flood the dye extended vertically through the bottom mixed layer, and its concentration decreased abruptly near the base of the pycnocline, usually at a height corresponding to a velocity maximum. Boundary layer growth is consistent with a one-dimensional, stress-driven entrainment model. A model was developed for the vertical structure of the vertical eddy viscosity in the flood tide boundary layer that is proportional to u2*/N∞, where u* and N∞ are the bottom friction velocity and buoyancy frequency above the boundary layer. The model also predicts that the buoyancy flux averaged over the bottom boundary layer is equal to 0.06N∞u2* or, based on the structure of the boundary layer equal to 0.1NBLu2*, where NBL is the buoyancy frequency across the flood-tide boundary layer. Estimates of shear production and buoyancy flux indicate that the flux Richardson number in the flood-tide boundary layer is 0.1–0.18, consistent with the model indicating that the flux Richardson number is between 0.1 and 0.14. During ebb, the boundary layer was more stratified, and its vertical extent was not as sharply delineated as in the flood. During neap tide the rate of mixing during ebb was significantly weaker than on flood, owing to reduced bottom stress and stabilization by stratification. As tidal amplitude increased ebb mixing increased and more closely resembled the boundary layer entrainment process observed during the flood. Tidal straining modestly increased the entrainment rate during the flood, and it restratified the boundary layer and inhibited mixing during the ebb.
  • Article
    Turbulent mixing in a far‐field plume during the transition to upwelling conditions : microstructure observations from an AUV
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2018-09-23) Fisher, Alexander W. ; Nidzieko, Nicholas J. ; Scully, Malcolm E. ; Chant, Robert J. ; Hunter, Elias J. ; Mazzini, Piero L. F.
    A REMUS 600 autonomous underwater vehicle was used to measure turbulent mixing within the far‐field Chesapeake Bay plume during the transition to upwelling. Prior to the onset of upwelling, the plume was mixed by a combination of energetic downwelling winds and bottom‐generated shear resulting in a two‐layer plume structure. Estimates of turbulent dissipation and buoyancy flux from a nose‐mounted microstructure system indicate that scalar exchange within the plume was patchy and transient, with direct wind mixing constrained to the near surface by stratification within the plume. Changing wind and tide conditions contributed to temporal variability. Following the separation of the upper plume from the coast, alongshore shear became a significant driver of mixing on the shoreward edge of the plume.
  • Dataset
    Hudson River estuary 2002 field experiment: moorings
    (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 2023-09-20) Geyer, W. Rockwell ; Chant, Robert J. ; Houghton, Robert ; Lerczak, James A. ; Hunter, Elias J. ; Conley, Margaret
    This dataset includes data from moorings deployed in the Hudson River estuary during the spring of 2002. The moorings were deployed at Spuyten Duyvil for 43 days and included a cross-channel array of temperature and conductivity sensors as well as 4 upward-looking ADCPs and 2 pressure sensors flanking the channel.