Virginia Institute of Marine Science
We present a creek-to-ocean 3D baroclinic model based on unstructured grids that aims to unite traditional hydrologic and ocean models in a single modeling platform, by taking full advantage of the polymorphism (i.e. a single model grid can seamlessly morph between full 3D, 2DV, 2DH and quasi-1D configurations). Using Hurricane Irene (2011)'s impact on the Delaware Bay as an example, a seamless 2D-3D model grid is implemented to include the entire US East Coast and Gulf of Mexico with a highly resolved Delaware Bay (down to 20-m resolution). The model is forced by flows from a hydrological model (National Water Model ) at the landward boundary. We demonstrate the model's accuracy, stability and robustness with the simulation of the storm surge and subsequent river flooding events and compound surges. Through a series of sensitivity tests, we illustrate the importance of including in the simulation the baroclinic effects, as provided by the large-scale Gulf Stream, in order to correctly capture the adjustment process following the main surge and the subsequent compound flooding events. The baroclinicity can explain up to 14% of the elevation error during the adjustment phase after the storm.
Storm surge; 3D model; Baroclinicity; SCHISM; National Water Model; Delaware Bay; USA
Ye, Fei; Zhang, Yinglong J.; Yu, Haocheng; Sun, Weiling; Moghimi, Saeed; Myers, Edward; Nunez, Karinna; Zhang, Ruoyin; Wang, Harry V.; Roland, Aron; Martins, Kevin; Bertin, Xavier; Du, Jiabi; and Liiu, Zhou, "Simulating storm surge and compound flooding events with a creek-to-ocean model: Importance of baroclinic effects" (2020). VIMS Articles. 1820.