Feddersen Falk

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  • Article
    Model-data comparisons of shear waves in the nearshore
    (American Geophysical Union, 2005-05-27) Noyes, T. James ; Guza, R. T. ; Feddersen, Falk ; Elgar, Steve ; Herbers, T. H. C.
    Observations of shear waves, alongshore propagating meanders of the mean alongshore current with periods of a few minutes and alongshore wavelengths of a few hundred meters, are compared with model predictions based on numerical solutions of the nonlinear shallow water equations. The model (after Özkan-Haller and Kirby (1999)) assumes alongshore homogeneity and temporally steady wave forcing and neglects wave-current interactions, eddy mixing, and spatial variation of the (nonlinear) bottom drag coefficient. Although the shapes of observed and modeled shear wave velocity spectra differ, and root-mean-square velocity fluctuations agree only to within a factor of about 3, aspects of the cross-shore structure of the observed (∼0.5–1.0 m above the seafloor) and modeled (vertically integrated) shear waves are qualitatively similar. Within the surf zone, where the mean alongshore current (V) is strong and shear waves are energetic, observed and modeled shear wave alongshore phase speeds agree and are close to both V and C lin (the phase speed of linearly unstable modes) consistent with previous results. Farther offshore, where V is weak and observed and modeled shear wave energy levels decay rapidly, modeled and observed C diverge from C lin and are close to the weak alongshore current V. The simulations suggest that the alongshore advection of eddies shed from the strong, sheared flow closer to shore may contribute to the offshore decrease in shear wave phase speeds. Similar to the observations, the modeled cross- and alongshore shear wave velocity fluctuations have approximately equal magnitude, and the modeled vorticity changes sign across the surf zone.
  • Article
    Surfzone to inner-shelf exchange estimated from dye tracer balances
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2015-09-19) Hally-Rosendahl, Kai ; Feddersen, Falk ; Clark, David B. ; Guza, R. T.
    Surfzone and inner-shelf tracer dispersion are observed at an approximately alongshore-uniform beach. Fluorescent Rhodamine WT dye, released near the shoreline continuously for 6.5 h, is advected alongshore by breaking-wave- and wind-driven currents, and ejected offshore from the surfzone to the inner-shelf by transient rip currents. Novel aerial-based multispectral dye concentration images and in situ measurements of dye, waves, and currents provide tracer transport and dilution observations spanning about 350 m cross-shore and 3 km alongshore. Downstream dilution of near-shoreline dye follows power law decay with exponent −0.33, implying that a tenfold increase in alongshore distance reduces the concentration about 50%. Coupled surfzone and inner-shelf dye mass balances close, and in 5 h, roughly half of the surfzone-released dye is transported offshore to the inner-shelf. Observed cross-shore transports are parameterized well ( inline image, best fit slope inline image) using a bulk exchange velocity and mean surfzone to inner-shelf dye concentration difference. The best fit cross-shore exchange velocity inline image is similar to a temperature-derived exchange velocity on another day with similar wave conditions. The inline image magnitude and observed inner-shelf dye length scales, time scales, and vertical structure indicate the dominance of transient rip currents in surfzone to inner-shelf cross-shore exchange during moderate waves at this alongshore-uniform beach.
  • Article
    Aerial imaging of fluorescent dye in the near shore
    (American Meteorological Society, 2014-06) Clark, David B. ; Lenain, Luc ; Feddersen, Falk ; Boss, Emmanuel S. ; Guza, R. T.
    Aerial images are used to quantify the concentration of fluorescent Rhodamine water tracing (WT) dye in turbid and optically deep water. Tracer releases near the shoreline of an ocean beach and near a tidal inlet were observed with a two-band multispectral camera and a pushbroom hyperspectral imager, respectively. The aerial observations are compared with near-surface in situ measurements. The ratio of upwelling radiance near the Rhodamine WT excitation and emission peaks varies linearly with the in situ dye concentrations for concentrations <20 ppb (r2 = 0.70 and r2 = 0.85–0.88 at the beach and inlet, respectively). The linear relationship allows for relative tracer concentration estimates without in situ calibration. The O(1 m) image pixels resolve complex flow structures on the inner shelf that transport and mix tracer.
  • Article
    The effect of wave breaking on surf-zone turbulence and alongshore currents : a modeling study
    (American Meteorological Society, 2005-11) Feddersen, Falk ; Trowbridge, John H.
    The effect of breaking-wave-generated turbulence on the mean circulation, turbulence, and bottom stress in the surf zone is poorly understood. A one-dimensional vertical coupled turbulence (k–ε) and mean-flow model is developed that incorporates the effect of wave breaking with a time-dependent surface turbulence flux and uses existing (published) model closures. No model parameters are tuned to optimize model–data agreement. The model qualitatively reproduces the mean dissipation and production during the most energetic breaking-wave conditions in 4.5-m water depth off of a sandy beach and slightly underpredicts the mean alongshore current. By modeling a cross-shore transect case example from the Duck94 field experiment, the observed surf-zone dissipation depth scaling and the observed mean alongshore current (although slightly underpredicted) are generally reproduced. Wave breaking significantly reduces the modeled vertical shear, suggesting that surf-zone bottom stress cannot be estimated by fitting a logarithmic current profile to alongshore current observations. Model-inferred drag coefficients follow parameterizations (Manning–Strickler) that depend on the bed roughness and inversely on the water depth, although the inverse depth dependence is likely a proxy for some other effect such as wave breaking. Variations in the bed roughness and the percentage of breaking-wave energy entering the water column have a comparable effect on the mean alongshore current and drag coefficient. However, covarying the wave height, forcing, and dissipation and bed roughness separately results in an alongshore current (drag coefficient) only weakly (strongly) dependent on the bed roughness because of the competing effects of increased turbulence, wave forcing, and orbital wave velocities.
  • Article
    Direct estimation of the Reynolds stress vertical structure in the nearshore
    (American Meteorological Society, 2007-01) Feddersen, Falk ; Williams, Albert J.
    Measurements of the vertical Reynolds stress components in the wave-dominated nearshore are required to diagnose momentum and turbulence dynamics. Removing wave bias from Reynolds stress estimates is critical to a successful diagnosis. Here two existing Reynolds stress estimation methods (those of Trowbridge, and Shaw and Trowbridge) for wave-dominated environments and an extended method (FW) that is a combination of the two are tested with a vertical array of three current meters deployed in 3.2-m water depth off an ocean beach. During the 175-h-long experiment the instruments were seaward of the surfzone and the alongshore current was wind driven. Intercomparison of Reynolds stress methods reveals that the Trowbridge method is wave bias dominated. Tests of the integrated cospectra are used to reject bad Reynolds stress estimates, and the Shaw and Trowbridge estimates are rejected more often than FW estimates. With the FW method, wave bias remains apparent in the cross-shore component of the Reynolds stress. However, the alongshore component of Reynolds stress measured at the three current meters are related to each other with a vertically uniform first EOF containing 73% of the variance, indicating the presence of a constant stress layer. This is the first time the vertical structure of Reynolds stress has been measured in a wave-dominated environment. The Reynolds stress is, albeit weakly, related to the wind stress and a parameterized bottom stress. Using derived wave bias and bottom stress parameterizations, the effect of wave bias on Reynolds stress estimates is shown to be weaker for more typical surfzone conditions (with both stronger waves and currents than those observed here).
  • Article
    Modeling surf zone tracer plumes : 2. Transport and dispersion
    (American Geophysical Union, 2011-11-18) Clark, David B. ; Feddersen, Falk ; Guza, R. T.
    Five surf zone dye tracer releases from the HB06 experiment are simulated with a tracer advection diffusion model coupled to a Boussinesq surf zone model (funwaveC). Model tracer is transported and stirred by currents and eddies and diffused with a breaking wave eddy diffusivity, set equal to the breaking wave eddy viscosity, and a small (0.01 m2 s−1) background diffusivity. Observed and modeled alongshore parallel tracer plumes, transported by the wave driven alongshore current, have qualitatively similar cross-shore structures. Although the model skill for mean tracer concentration is variable (from negative to 0.73) depending upon release, cross-shore integrated tracer moments (normalized by the cross-shore tracer integral) have consistently high skills (≈0.9). Modeled and observed bulk surf zone cross-shore diffusivity estimates are also similar, with 0.72 squared correlation and skill of 0.4. Similar to the observations, the model bulk (absolute) cross-shore diffusivity is consistent with a mixing length parameterization based on low-frequency (0.001–0.03 Hz) eddies. The model absolute cross-shore dispersion is dominated by stirring from surf zone eddies and does not depend upon the presence of the breaking wave eddy diffusivity. Given only the bathymetry and incident wave field, the coupled Boussinesq-tracer model qualitatively reproduces the observed cross-shore absolute tracer dispersion, suggesting that the model can be used to study surf zone tracer dispersion mechanisms.
  • Article
    Modeling surf zone tracer plumes : 1. Waves, mean currents, and low-frequency eddies
    (American Geophysical Union, 2011-11-18) Feddersen, Falk ; Clark, David B. ; Guza, R. T.
    A model that accurately simulates surf zone waves, mean currents, and low-frequency eddies is required to diagnose the mechanisms of surf zone tracer transport and dispersion. In this paper, a wave-resolving time-dependent Boussinesq model is compared with waves and currents observed during five surf zone dye release experiments. In a companion paper, Clark et al. (2011) compare a coupled tracer model to the dye plume observations. The Boussinesq model uses observed bathymetry and incident random, directionally spread waves. For all five releases, the model generally reproduces the observed cross-shore evolution of significant wave height, mean wave angle, bulk directional spread, mean alongshore current, and the frequency-dependent sea surface elevation spectra and directional moments. The largest errors are near the shoreline where the bathymetry is most uncertain. The model also reproduces the observed cross-shore structure of rotational velocities in the infragravity (0.004 < f < 0.03 Hz) and very low frequency (VLF) (0.001 < f < 0.004 Hz) bands, although the modeled VLF energy is 2–3 times too large. Similar to the observations, the dominant contributions to the modeled eddy-induced momentum flux are in the VLF band. These eddies are elliptical near the shoreline and circular in the mid surf zone. The model-data agreement for sea swell waves, low-frequency eddies, and mean currents suggests that the model is appropriate for simulating surf zone tracer transport and dispersion.
  • Article
    Episodic vertical nutrient fluxes and nearshore phytoplankton blooms in Southern California
    (Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography, 2012-11) Omand, Melissa M. ; Feddersen, Falk ; Guza, R. T. ; Franks, Peter J. S.
    Three distinct phytoplankton blooms lasting 4–9 d were observed in approximately 15-m water depth near Huntington Beach, California, between June and October of 2006. Each bloom was preceded by a vertical NO3 flux event 6–10 d earlier. NO3 concentrations were estimated using a temperature proxy that was verified by comparison with the limited NO3 observations. The lower–water-column vertical NO3 flux from vertical advection was inferred from observed vertical isotherm displacement. Turbulent vertical eddy diffusivity was parameterized based on the observed background (< 0.3 cycles h−1) stratification and vertical shear in the horizontal currents. The first vertical nitrate flux event in June contained both advective and turbulent fluxes, whereas the later two events were primarily turbulent, driven by shear in the lower part of the water column. The correlation between the NO3 flux and the observed chlorophyll a (Chl a) was maximum (r2 = 0.40) with an 8-d lag. A simple nitrate–phytoplankton model using a linear uptake function and driven with the NO3 flux captured the timing, magnitude, and duration of the three Chl a blooms (skill = 0.61) using optimal net growth rate parameters that were within the expected range. Vertical and horizontal advection of Chl a past the measurement site were too small to explain the observed Chl a increases during the blooms. The vertical NO3 flux was a primary control on the growth events, and estimation of both the advective (upwelled) and turbulent fluxes is necessary to best predict these episodic blooms.
  • Article
    Vertical structure of dissipation in the nearshore
    (American Meteorological Society, 2007-07) Feddersen, Falk ; Trowbridge, John H. ; Williams, Albert J.
    The vertical structure of the dissipation of turbulence kinetic energy was observed in the nearshore region (3.2-m mean water depth) with a tripod of three acoustic Doppler current meters off a sandy ocean beach. Surface and bottom boundary layer dissipation scaling concepts overlap in this region. No depth-limited wave breaking occurred at the tripod, but wind-induced whitecapping wave breaking did occur. Dissipation is maximum near the surface and minimum at middepth, with a secondary maximum near the bed. The observed dissipation does not follow a surfzone scaling, nor does it follow a “log layer” surface or bottom boundary layer scaling. At the upper two current meters, dissipation follows a modified deep-water breaking-wave scaling. Vertical shear in the mean currents is negligible and shear production magnitude is much less than dissipation, implying that the vertical diffusion of turbulence is important. The increased near-bed secondary dissipation maximum results from a decrease in the turbulent length scale.
  • Article
    Observations and modeling of a tidal inlet dye tracer plume
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2016-10-24) Feddersen, Falk ; Olabarrieta, Maitane ; Guza, R. T. ; Winters, Dylan ; Raubenheimer, Britt ; Elgar, Steve
    A 9 km long tracer plume was created by continuously releasing Rhodamine WT dye for 2.2 h during ebb tide within the southern edge of the main tidal channel at New River Inlet, NC on 7 May 2012, with highly obliquely incident waves and alongshore winds. Over 6 h from release, COAWST (coupled ROMS and SWAN, including wave, wind, and tidal forcing) modeled dye compares well with (aerial hyperspectral and in situ) observed dye concentration. Dye first was transported rapidly seaward along the main channel and partially advected across the ebb-tidal shoal until reaching the offshore edge of the shoal. Dye did not eject offshore in an ebb-tidal jet because the obliquely incident breaking waves retarded the inlet-mouth ebb-tidal flow and forced currents along the ebb shoal. The dye plume largely was confined to <4 m depth. Dye was then transported downcoast in the narrow (few 100 m wide) surfzone of the beach bordering the inlet at 0.3 inline image driven by wave breaking. Over 6 h, the dye plume is not significantly affected by buoyancy. Observed dye mass balances close indicating all released dye is accounted for. Modeled and observed dye behaviors are qualitatively similar. The model simulates well the evolution of the dye center of mass, lateral spreading, surface area, and maximum concentration, as well as regional (“inlet” and “ocean”) dye mass balances. This indicates that the model represents well the dynamics of the ebb-tidal dye plume. Details of the dye transport pathways across the ebb shoal are modeled poorly perhaps owing to low-resolution and smoothed model bathymetry. Wave forcing effects have a large impact on the dye transport.