A Diagnostic Calculation of Continental Shelf Circulation.
FLORIDA STATE UNIV TALLAHASSEE DEPT OF OCEANOGRAPHY
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An attempt is made to compute from observed density the three-dimensional velocity field in a continental shelf region that is bounded by the coast on one side and open to the ocean along the rest of its perimeter. The bottom topography of the shelf region is found to be of crucial importance. For a nondimensional depth gradient greater than the square root of the Ekman number, E, based on the vertical eddy viscosity and a scale depth, the isobaths become geostrophic contours in the sense that the barotropic part of the velocity field possesses no component normal to the isobaths. In such case, the flow field everywhere away from the coast is determined once the geostrophic velocity vector becomes known at some reference point along each of the isobaths. Modified author abstract
- Physical and Dynamic Oceanography