Wind-Forced Modeling Studies of Currents, Meanders, Eddies, and Filaments of the Canary Current System
NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA DEPT OF OCEANOGRAPHY
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A high-resolution, multi-level, primitive equation ocean model is used to examine the response of an eastern boundary oceanic regime to both wind forcing and irregular coastline geometry. The focus of this study is the coastal region from 300 N to 42.50 N, a portion of the Canary Current System CCS. To study the generation, evolution, and sustainment of the currents, meanders, eddies and filaments of the CCS, the model is forced from rest using seasonal climatological winds. To investigate - the role of irregular coastline geometry, the first experiment uses climatological wind forcing along an idealized straightened coastline, while the second experiment uses the same wind forcing along an irregular coastline. In both cases a surface current, undercurrent, meanders, eddies, and filaments are generated. The results obtained while using the irregular, rather than the idealized coastline, however, show preferred eddy generation locations as well as enhanced growth of meanders, eddies, and filaments. The features produced by the model are consistent with available observations of the CCS. The model results support the hypothesis that both wind forcing and irregular coastline geometry are important mechanisms in the generation of many of the observed features of the CCS.
- Physical and Dynamic Oceanography
- Test Facilities, Equipment and Methods