Seventh Annual AMS Student Conference


Ekman Transport and Tidal Variations in the Gulf of Maine

Norman Shippee Jr., Plymouth State University, Plymouth, NH

A recent study conducted by Cannon (2007) studied coastal flooding events in the Gulf of Maine since the beginning of the 20th Century, and determined that the majority of them were associated with strong northeasterly winds. These flooding events are contributed to by to major factors; wind waves and tidal excursion. Ekman (1905) stated that the Earth's rotation, being the cause of Coriolis force, influenced the mass transport of water such that the net transport occurred at 90 degrees to the right of wind stress in the Northern Hemisphere. This effect, better known as Ekman pumping, is a possible explanation to the difference between the observed tidal heights and predicted astronomical tidal heights. Using data obtained from the Center for Operational Oceanic Products and Services (COOPS), the computation of a difference function between the observed and predicted tidal heights was made for the tidal gauge stations of Portland, Bar Harbor, Portsmouth, Cutler Naval Base, and Boston Harbor. This study uses cross correlation of the difference between observed and predicted tidal heights to specify the relationship of tidally-induced coastal flooding to the along-shore wind component in the western Gulf of Maine.

Poster Session 1, Student Conference General Poster Session
Sunday, 20 January 2008, 5:30 PM-7:00 PM, Exhibit Hall B

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