Radar observation of an along-front jet and transverse flow convergence associated with a North Sea front

J. P. Matthews, A. D. Fox, D. Prandle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

22 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper describes the first synoptic mapping of surface currents across a strong and stable tidal mixing front by HF radar. The radar deployment took place along the coast of northeast England during August and early September 1988 in parallel with extensive ship based CTD density and ADCP (Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler) measurements which provided data in the vertical plane to complement those of the HF radar. We describe two main results. Firstly, during a spring-tide period of strengthening inshore density gradients, an along-front jet with speeds of up to 14 cm s-1 was detected in the long term IIF radar residual field. The location and spatial form of this jet correspond with estimates of geostrophic currents derived from the measured density field. Secondly, a transverse "double-sided" surface flow convergence centred close to the frontal boundary and of net magnitude 4 cm s-1 accompanied the large along-front jet. Such a weaker cross-frontal component has been anticipated on theoretical grounds but never previously observed in this detailed fashion. The experiment underlines the power of a synergistic approach, based on HF remote sensing radar and ADCP, for the study of frontal circulation in coastal zones.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)109-130
Number of pages22
JournalContinental Shelf Research
Volume13
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1993

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Radar observation of an along-front jet and transverse flow convergence associated with a North Sea front'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this