An Experimental Study of Three-Layer Circulation.
JOHNS HOPKINS UNIV BALTIMORE MD DEPT OF EARTH AND PLANETARY SCIENCES
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A three-layer circulation flow, which occurs typically in estuaries, was modelled in the laboratory. The experiments were designed to test theoretical predictions made by Long in an earlier analysis of the problem. The experiment consisted briefly of the following a tank of length 496.6 cm and cross-section 37.2 cm x 15.9 cm was filled with two layers of water, each of 15.0 cm depth. The upper layer was fresh water and the lower layer was an NaCl-water solution with .25 or 1.00 salinity. After filling was completed, a 126.3 cm length at one end of the tank was blocked off, and the two fluid layers in this region were then thoroughly mixed, resulting in a homogeneous solution having salinity.125 or .50. The partition separating the mixed region from the rest of the tank was removed, and a three-layer circulation flow ensued. Basically, fluid from the mixed region, having a density intermediate between the two layers outside of this region, was seen to flow out along the interface of these two layers. Simultaneously, flow in the reverse direction into the mixed region from the external layers was observed to occur.
- Physical and Dynamic Oceanography