Internal solitary waves in the Coastal Mixing and Optics 1996 experiment : multimodal structure and resuspension

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  • Observations of internal solitary waves (ISWs) and of their role in sediment resuspension during the Coastal Mixing and Optics 1996 (CMO 96) experiment are reported. The largest resuspension events observed in the experiment can be related to retarded flow under the wave footprint. Two distinctly different periods of resuspension events could be distinguished based on the prevailing atmospheric conditions: a calm period, which we consider characteristic of nominal conditions, and an energetic period, during which two major storms occurred. ISWs arrived at the mooring site from a variety of sources, though a common intermodal dynamics seemed to occur repeatedly. Both mode 1 and mode 2 ISWs have been observed. The present analysis of the month-long portion of the CMO 96 data set constitutes the first reported observations, insofar as we are aware, of mode 2 waves on the continental shelf. Both mode 1 and mode 2 ISWs were found to stimulate resuspension. The mode 2 waves seem to be generated locally by resonant or topographic interactions with mode 1 ISWs. Internal wave fields of the type described here are expected to exist in a variety of other shallow seas as well.
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  • Bogucki, D. J., Redekopp, L. G. and Barth, J. , 2005, Internal solitary waves in the Coastal Mixing and Optics 1996 experiment : Multimodal structure and resuspension: J. Geophys. Res., v. 110, C02024.
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  • 110
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