Marine Science Faculty Publications

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Atmosphere model-derived flux fields are used to force coastal ocean models. Coarse resolution and incomplete boundary layer dynamics limit the accuracy of these forcing fields and hence the performance of the ocean models. We address this limitation for the west Florida shelf using optimal interpolation to blend winds measured in situ with winds produced by model analyses. By improving the coastal wind field we improve the fidelity between currents modeled and currents observed. Comparisons between momentum analyses performed independently from the model and the data demonstrate the fidelity to be of a correct dynamical basis. We conclude that the primary limitation to coastal ocean model performance lies with the boundary conditions.

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Geophysical Research Letters, v. 31, issue 14, art. L14303

Copyright 2004 by the American Geophysical Union.