Accession Number:

ADA609529

Title:

The Variability of Internal Tides in the Northern South China Sea

Descriptive Note:

Journal article

Corporate Author:

NAVAL RESEARCH LAB STENNIS DETACHMENT STENNIS SPACE CENTER MS

Report Date:

2013-08-27

Pagination or Media Count:

13.0

Abstract:

An array of three bottom-mounted ADCP moorings was deployed on the prevailing propagation path of strong internal tides for nearly 1 year across the continental slope in the northern South China Sea. These velocity measurements are used to study the intra-annual variability of diurnal and semidiurnal internal tidal energy in the region. A numerical model, the Luzon Strait Ocean NowcastForecast System developed at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory that covers the northern South China Sea and the Kuroshio, is used to interpret the observed variation of internal tidal energy on the Dongsha slope. Internal tides are generated primarily at the two submarine ridges in the Luzon Strait. At the western ridge generation site, the westward energy flux of the diurnal internal tide is sensitive to the stratification and isopycnal slope associated with the Kuroshio. The horizontal shear at the Kuroshio front does not modify the propagation path of either diurnal or semidiurnal tides because the relative vorticity of the Kuroshio in Luzon Strait is not strong enough to increase the effective inertial frequency to the intrinsic frequency of the internal tides. The variation of internal tidal energy on the continental slope and Dongsha plateau can be attributed to the variation in tidal beam propagation in the northern South China Sea.

Subject Categories:

  • Physical and Dynamic Oceanography

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE