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Using a Broadband ADCP in a Tidal Channel. Part I: Mean Flow and Shear

Using a Broadband ADCP in a Tidal Channel. Part I: Mean Flow and Shear This paper discusses the principles of measuring the mean velocity and its vertical shear in a turbulent flow using an acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP), and presents an analysis of data gathered in a tidal channel. The assumption of horizontal homogeneity of the first moments is fundamental to the derivation of the mean velocity vector because the velocity is never homogeneous over the span of the beams in a turbulent flow. Two tests of this assumption are developed——a comparison of the mean error velocity against its standard deviation and against the mean speed. The fraction of the samples that pass these tests increases with increasing spatial averaging and exceeds 95%% for distances longer than 55 beam separations. The statistical uncertainty of the velocity and shear vector, averaged over 10 min and longer, stems from turbulent fluctuations rather than Doppler noise. Estimation of the vertical velocity requires a correction for the bias in the measured tilt. The mean velocity and shear estimates from this natural tidal channel show more complex depth––time variations than found in idealized one-dimensional channel flow, which seldom occurs in nature. The ADCP measurements reveal the secondary circulation, bursts of up- and downwelling, shear reversals, and transverse velocity shear. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology American Meteorological Society

Using a Broadband ADCP in a Tidal Channel. Part I: Mean Flow and Shear

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Publisher
American Meteorological Society
Copyright
Copyright © 1997 American Meteorological Society
ISSN
1520-0426
DOI
10.1175/1520-0426(1999)016<1556:UABAIA>2.0.CO;2
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This paper discusses the principles of measuring the mean velocity and its vertical shear in a turbulent flow using an acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP), and presents an analysis of data gathered in a tidal channel. The assumption of horizontal homogeneity of the first moments is fundamental to the derivation of the mean velocity vector because the velocity is never homogeneous over the span of the beams in a turbulent flow. Two tests of this assumption are developed——a comparison of the mean error velocity against its standard deviation and against the mean speed. The fraction of the samples that pass these tests increases with increasing spatial averaging and exceeds 95%% for distances longer than 55 beam separations. The statistical uncertainty of the velocity and shear vector, averaged over 10 min and longer, stems from turbulent fluctuations rather than Doppler noise. Estimation of the vertical velocity requires a correction for the bias in the measured tilt. The mean velocity and shear estimates from this natural tidal channel show more complex depth––time variations than found in idealized one-dimensional channel flow, which seldom occurs in nature. The ADCP measurements reveal the secondary circulation, bursts of up- and downwelling, shear reversals, and transverse velocity shear.

Journal

Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic TechnologyAmerican Meteorological Society

Published: Jul 16, 1997

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