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High Resolution Measurements of Nonlinear Internal Waves and Mixing on the Washington Continental Shelf

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Technical Report

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Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California San Diego La Jolla United States

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We are interested in the general problems of internal waves and ocean mixing. Knowledge of these is important for advancing the performance of operational and climate models, as well as for understanding local problems such as pollutant dispersal and biological productivity. Most of the oceans physical and acoustic environments are significantly modified by internal waves. In the specific case of nonlinear internal waves NLIWs, the currents and displacements of the waves are strong enough to impact surface and under-sea operations and communication. The pilot research described here will begin to improve our knowledge and predictive ability of NLIWs and their impacts on the Washington shelf. Additionally, it will form the foundation for better understanding of NLIW generation, their propagation in strongly sheared coastal currents, and their associated mixing on continental shelves worldwide.

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