Baroclinic tides at a North-West European margin: Analytical modelling compared to in situ data

K Guizien, M Inall, E Barthelemy, T Sherwin

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In this paper, we present an analytical modelling of internal tide generation at steep continental margins. By extending the model devised by Rattray (1960), a simple model accounting for the stratification of the ocean (2-layer), the earth's rotation, free surface boundary conditions, radiation condition at the coast and the oblicity of the incident barotropic Poincare wave with respect to the shelf-break (modelled by a step) is derived. This model predicts that waves propagate along horizontal rays, which are refracted by bottom variations: basically, Snell laws are retrieved. Under the assumption of small density ratio and thin upper layer, amplitudes of both transmitted and reflected, baroclinic and barotropic waves are solution of a simplified linear system presented here. The present model is compared with in situ data measured at the Malin Shelf shelf-edge during a UK NERC LOIS/SES cruise in 1996.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-186
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the International Offshore and Polar Engineering Conference (ISOPE)
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1999


  • internal tide
  • analytical modelling
  • Malin Shelf

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