Observations and modeling of a tidal inlet dye tracer plume
Guza, R. T.
MetadataShow full item record
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.
© The Author(s), 2016. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License. The definitive version was published in Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 121 (2016): 7819–7844, doi:10.1002/2016JC011922.
Suggested CitationJournal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 121 (2016): 7819–7844
The following license files are associated with this item:
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Salles, Paulo (Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 2001-02)The importance of the persistence of multiple inlets in coastal systems is fundamental for issues such as water quality, navigability, and beach/barrier stability. In long embayments, having extended residence times, the ...
Salles, Paulo; O'Malley, Stephen P.; Voulgaris, George; Aubrey, David G. (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 2000-05)The apparent persistence and stability of multiple tidal inlets in coastal lagoons are important for a variety of reasons, such as water quality, navigability and beach/barrier stability. To identify and study the processes ...
Aubrey, David G.; Speer, Paul E. (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 1983-06)Various aspects of sediment transport in and around natural, unstructured tidal inlets were investigated over the two year period of study. Concentrating on two tidal inlets (Nauset Inlet and Popponesset Inlet, Cape Cod, ...