Salinity Induced Horizontal Estuarine Circulation

by Brady A. Elliott, Grad. Asst.; Dept. of Oceanography, Texas A&M Univ., College Station, Tex.,
Robert O. Reid, Prof.; Dept. of Oceanography, Texas A&M Univ., College Station, Tex.,


Serial Information: Journal of the Waterways, Harbors and Coastal Engineering Division, 1976, Vol. 102, Issue 4, Pg. 425-442


Document Type: Journal Paper

Abstract: A finite difference approximation to the equations of motion without the field acceleration terms, and the salt conservation equation with an isotropic diffusion coefficient, are used to model the circulation of a rectangular basin having the gross dimensional characteristics of a bar-built estuary. The recursion relations include the dynamic effects of horizontal salinity variations. Two cases are examined; in the first case the basin has a constant depth and in the second case the bottom slope varies linearly across the basin. The resulting patterns of circulation are qualitatively analyzed using a vorticity equation. The analysis indicates that the dynamic effects of horizontal salinity gradients can be significant in controlling the circulation in localized sections of the basin.

Subject Headings: Basins | Salinity | Equations of motion | Water circulation | Estuaries | Approximation methods | Salts | Isotropy

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