Turbulent Mixing in a Far-Field Plume During the Transition to Upwelling Conditions: Microstructure Observations From an AUV

Alexander W. Fisher, Nicholas J. Nidzieko, Malcolm E. Scully, Robert J. Chant, Elias J. Hunter, Piero L.F. Mazzini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

A REMUS 600 autonomous underwater vehicle was used to measure turbulent mixing within the far-field Chesapeake Bay plume during the transition to upwelling. Prior to the onset of upwelling, the plume was mixed by a combination of energetic downwelling winds and bottom-generated shear resulting in a two-layer plume structure. Estimates of turbulent dissipation and buoyancy flux from a nose-mounted microstructure system indicate that scalar exchange within the plume was patchy and transient, with direct wind mixing constrained to the near surface by stratification within the plume. Changing wind and tide conditions contributed to temporal variability. Following the separation of the upper plume from the coast, alongshore shear became a significant driver of mixing on the shoreward edge of the plume.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9765-9773
Number of pages9
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume45
Issue number18
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 28 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Keywords

  • autonomous underwater vehicle
  • mixing
  • river plume
  • turbulence
  • upwelling

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