Innovative Platforms for Upper Ocean Research
Final rept. 1 Jan 1997-31 Dec 2000
WOODS HOLE OCEANOGRAPHIC INSTITUTION MA
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Our objective was to develop tools to visualize, measure, and thus understand the physical processes active in the upper ocean in three dimensions on scales of meters to one kilometer. Our approach was an integrated one, combining engineering, design, static and dynamic modeling, fabrication of arrays, and the deployment and use of these arrays. We designed, built, and used a two-dimensional array for sampling a horizontal section of the thermocline. This was deployed in the strong tidal flows over Stellwagen Bank in Massachusetts Bay and collected data to both analyze its performance as a observational platform and to investigate internal tides and solitons at this site. Two different surface compliant arrays were tested, one a linear array based on an oil spill containment boom and the second a two-dimensional, floating mesh constructed of polypropylene rope. By hanging sensor strings down from these arrays, two and three-dimensional sampling of the very near surface ocean can be carried out.
- Physical and Dynamic Oceanography