Marine Science Faculty Publications

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mean circulation, West Florida Shelf, long‐term moorings

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The mean circulation on the West Florida Continental. Shelf is described using long-term current measurements. Bounded by the Florida peninsula to the east and the Gulf of Mexico to the west, the West Florida Continental Shelf mean flow is oriented approximately along-isobath and southward. The mean velocity vectors veer systematically with depth, shoreward over shallow water and seaward over deeper water. This polarization change implies that the mean flow is upwelling over shallow water and downwelling seaward from the inner shelf. Such a well-organized, three-dimensional coastal ocean circulation pattern, revealed by an unprecedented set of observations, and explained on the basis of wind forcing and density field adjustment, has important implications for both fisheries and red tide occurrences.

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Geophysical Research Letters, v. 36, issue 19, art. L19610

Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.