A model of suspended sediment transport by internal tides

Ribbe, Joachim and Holloway, Peter E. (2001) A model of suspended sediment transport by internal tides. Continental Shelf Research, 21 (4). pp. 395-422. ISSN 0278-4343


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[Abstract]: The ability of internal tides to resuspend and advect sediment over continental shelfs and slope regions is investigated by applying an internal wave and sediment transport model. Numerical experiments are carried out, firstly, with the ratio of bathymetry and internal waves characteristics creating critical, subcritical, and supercritical conditions, and secondly, for an observed section of the Australian North West Shelf. In the former cases, the model is forced with an internal tide propagating through the model domain. The latter application involves forcing by a barotropic tide which in turn generates internal waves at the shelf slope. Internal wave generated bottom layer shear stresses are large enough to resuspend sediment. The application of a turbulence closure scheme results in the creation and maintenance of a thin nepheloid layer. The thickness of the suspended sediment layer is controlled by vertical diffusion which is large within the bottom boundary layer, but very small outside. The residual velocity and the asymmetry associated with the velocity field, result in both down- and upslope net suspended sediment fluxes, and deposition of resuspended material onto the shelf. These suspended sediment fluxes are largest for critical bottom slopes. The parting point between down- and upslope net sediment flux is found to be sensitive to the formulation of vertical mixing with the parting point moving downslope for increased mixing. At the Australian North West Shelf, near the shelf break and upper slope, the net flux of resuspended material is influenced by both the barotropic and internal tide. The phase relationship in bottom layer shear stresses generated from those two tides causes regions of both enhancement and reduction in the resuspension rates and net suspended sediment fluxes.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Deposited in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Biological and Physical Sciences (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Biological and Physical Sciences (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2007 00:33
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 22:35
Uncontrolled Keywords: suspended sediment; internal tides
Fields of Research (2008): 04 Earth Sciences > 0405 Oceanography > 040503 Physical Oceanography
04 Earth Sciences > 0499 Other Earth Sciences > 049999 Earth Sciences not elsewhere classified
Fields of Research (2020): 37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3708 Oceanography > 370803 Physical oceanography
37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3799 Other earth sciences > 379999 Other earth sciences not elsewhere classified
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/1008

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