Application of a Boundary Fitted Coordinate Hydrodynamic Model

by Malcolm L. Spaulding, Univ of Rhode Island, United States,
Wenrui Huang, Univ of Rhode Island, United States,
Daniel Mendelsohn, Univ of Rhode Island, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Estuarine and Coastal Modeling


A three-dimensional, boundary-fitted hydrodynamic model was applied in a two-dimensional, vertically-averaged mode to predict the tidal circulation in Mt. Hope Bay, a small estuary located on the eastern side of Narragansett Bay. The model solved the momentum and continuity equations on a non-staggered grid using a semi-implicit finite difference algorithm for the exterior flow and an explicit procedure for the interior flow. The model has previously been tested against analytic solutions for tidal, wind, and density induced flows. Model predicted currents and sea surface elevation were in good agreement with available observations for a bottom drag coefficient of 0.0036. Sensitivity studies showed that sea surface elevation was insensitive to bottom friction although the predicted velocities decrease as friction increases. The sea surface elevation was approximately 3 hours out of phase with the currents in agreement with standing wave theory.

Subject Headings: Seas and oceans | Domain boundary | Hydrodynamics | Hydrologic models | Two-dimensional models | Bays | Ocean currents | Agreements and treaties | Rhode Island | United States

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