Lagrangian flow at the foot of a shelfbreak front
Robert W. Houghton
using a dye tracer injected into the bottom boundary layer
Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory
Palisades, NY 10964
(Submitted to GRL, March 1997)
AbstractConvergent flow at the foot of the shelfbreak
front in the Middle Atlantic Bight has been detected
using a dye tracer, Rhodamine-WT, injected into the
bottom boundary layer. The observations substantiate
model predictions by Chapman and Lentz (1994) of a
small scale convergent flow in the vicinity of the
front which would be very difficult if not impossible
to detect in conventional moored current meter data.
By following the dispersal of the dye patch over a 4
day period Lagrangian velocities of the order of 0.015
m/s with respect to the front were resolved even as
the frontal boundary was displaced ~12 km onshore.
The water following properties of the dye tracer
provides a new technique for studying the small-scale
circulation and mixing at the frontal boundary.
D. Jarvis Belinne
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University