Cross-shore tracer exchange between the surfzone and inner-shelf

TitleCross-shore tracer exchange between the surfzone and inner-shelf
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsHally-Rosendahl K., Feddersen F, Guza RT
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research-Oceans
Date Published2014/07
Type of ArticleArticle
ISBN Number2169-9275
Accession NumberWOS:000340415500021
Keywordscalifornia; continental-shelf; internal tidal bores; nearshore; new-england shelf; ocean; rip currents; southern; transport; turbulence; zone

Cross-shore tracer exchange between the surfzone and inner-shelf is examined using temperature and dye measurements at an approximately alongshore-uniform beach. An alongshore-oriented plume is created by releasing dye continuously for 4.5 h in a surfzone alongshore current. The plume is sampled for 13 h from the release point to 700 m downstream, between the shoreline and 250 m offshore (6 m water depth). Within the surfzone (<= 2 m depth), water is relatively warm, and dye is vertically well mixed. On the inner-shelf (3-6 m depth), alongshore currents are weak, and elevated temperature and dye co-occur in 25-50 m wide alongshore patches. Within the patches, dye is approximately depth-uniform in the warm upper 3 m where thermal stratification is weak, but decreases rapidly below 3 m with a strong thermocline. Dye and temperature vertical gradients are correlated, and dye is not observed below 18 degrees C. The observations and a model indicate that, just seaward of the surfzone, thermal stratification inhibits vertical mixing to magnitudes similar to those in the ocean interior. Similar surfzone and inner-shelf mean alongshore dye dilution rates are consistent with inner-shelf dye properties being determined by local cross-shore advection. The alongshore-patchy and warm inner-shelf dye is ejected from the surfzone by transient rip currents. Estimated Stokes drift driven cross-shore exchange is small. The transient rip current driven depth-normalized heat flux out of the surfzone has magnitude similar to those of larger-scale shelf processes. Dye recycling, from the inner-shelf back to the surfzone, is suggested by relatively long surfzone dye residence times.

Short TitleJ Geophys Res-Oceans
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