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Turbulent mixing in the seasonally-stratified western Irish Sea: a Thorpe Scale perspective

Turbulent mixing in the seasonally-stratified western Irish Sea: a Thorpe Scale perspective
Turbulent mixing in the seasonally-stratified western Irish Sea: a Thorpe Scale perspective
The seasonal thermocline in shelf-seas represents an important biogeophysical barrier to the vertical flux of nutrients into the photic zone. Episodic weakening of this barrier plays an important role in sustaining the sub-surface chlorophyll maximum in summer and hence impacts the carbon draw-down in the seasonally-stratified zones of the shelf seas. Here we present estimates of the rate of turbulent kinetic energy dissipation inferred from microstructure shear probes and compare them with dissipation rates inferred from a standard conductivity-temperature-depth instrument and from a fast thermistor (Thorpe Scale methodology) at a site in the seasonally-stratified Irish Sea. All methods show strong dissipation rates in response to tidal stresses near the bed (order 10?2 Wm?3) with qualitatively similar temporal and spatial patterns. In the interior of the water column, however, only the microstructure shear probe estimates resolve the mixing in the region of the thermocline.
1812-0822
2141-2155
Stansfield, K.L.
b62df90b-555d-4107-97aa-57b16d2e4b44
Palmer, M.R.
9e9062b1-fe9b-4aac-a42a-9def70a5be0c
Rippeth, T.P.
a772c9bb-a497-4881-8847-795785d836f2
Simpson, J.H.
5319d01d-458d-4b93-a99e-3e779c2ae399
Stansfield, K.L.
b62df90b-555d-4107-97aa-57b16d2e4b44
Palmer, M.R.
9e9062b1-fe9b-4aac-a42a-9def70a5be0c
Rippeth, T.P.
a772c9bb-a497-4881-8847-795785d836f2
Simpson, J.H.
5319d01d-458d-4b93-a99e-3e779c2ae399

Stansfield, K.L., Palmer, M.R., Rippeth, T.P. and Simpson, J.H. (2013) Turbulent mixing in the seasonally-stratified western Irish Sea: a Thorpe Scale perspective. Ocean Science Discussions, 10 (6), 2141-2155. (doi:10.5194/osd-10-2141-2013).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The seasonal thermocline in shelf-seas represents an important biogeophysical barrier to the vertical flux of nutrients into the photic zone. Episodic weakening of this barrier plays an important role in sustaining the sub-surface chlorophyll maximum in summer and hence impacts the carbon draw-down in the seasonally-stratified zones of the shelf seas. Here we present estimates of the rate of turbulent kinetic energy dissipation inferred from microstructure shear probes and compare them with dissipation rates inferred from a standard conductivity-temperature-depth instrument and from a fast thermistor (Thorpe Scale methodology) at a site in the seasonally-stratified Irish Sea. All methods show strong dissipation rates in response to tidal stresses near the bed (order 10?2 Wm?3) with qualitatively similar temporal and spatial patterns. In the interior of the water column, however, only the microstructure shear probe estimates resolve the mixing in the region of the thermocline.

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More information

Published date: 19 November 2013
Additional Information: "This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Ocean Science (OS). A final paper in OS is not foreseen"
Organisations: Ocean and Earth Science

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 363199
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/363199
ISSN: 1812-0822
PURE UUID: 8ac0310c-6510-46c3-8f81-89ea6e3234bf

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Date deposited: 18 Mar 2014 13:31
Last modified: 11 Dec 2021 03:51

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Contributors

Author: K.L. Stansfield
Author: M.R. Palmer
Author: T.P. Rippeth
Author: J.H. Simpson

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