The impact of high-frequency current variability on dispersion off the eastern Antarctic Peninsula

We present observations of high-frequency current variability on the continental shelf and the slope of the Antarctic Peninsula using Lagrangian surface drifters deployed as part of the Antarctic Drifter Experiment: Links to Isobaths and Ecosystems (ADELIE) project. Here we focus on high-frequency processes such as tides and inertial oscillations that are typically smoothed out of large-scale spatially averaged, and/or temporally averaged, observed current fields. We investigate the role that this class of motion plays in the transport of physical or biogeochemical properties. Lateral displacements on the shelf and slope are found to be larger than displacements in deeper waters where tidal currents are negligible. We apply this result in a parameterization of the lateral dispersion during an off-line drifter modeling study. The outcome is an improvement on the modeling of Lagrangian drifting particles compared with a standard random walk scheme.

Details

Author(s):
Authors: Trasviña, A., Heywood, Karen J., Renner, A.H.H., Thorpe, S.E., Thompson, A.F., Zamudio, L.

On this site: Sally Thorpe
Date:
1 January, 2011
Journal/Source:
Journal of Geophysical Research / 116
Page(s):
13pp
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
https://doi.org/10.1029/2011JC007003