Virginia Institute of Marine Science
JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH-OCEANS
Tide effects on the structure of the near-field Changjiang River plume and on the extension of the far-field plume have often been neglected in analysis and numerical simulations, which is the focus of this study. Numerical experiments highlighted the crucial role of the tidal forcing in modulating the Changjiang River plume. Without the tidal forcing, the plume results in an unrealistic upstream extension along the Jiangsu coast. With the tidal forcing, the vertical mixing increases, resulting in a strong horizontal salinity gradient at the northern side of the Changjiang River mouth along the Jiangsu coast, which acts as a dynamic barrier and restricts the northward migration of the plume. Furthermore, the tidal forcing produces a bidirectional plume structure in the near field, and the plume separation is located at the head of the submarine canyon. A significant bulge occurs around the head of the submarine canyon and rotates anticyclonically, which carries a large portion of the diluted water toward the northeast and merges into the far-field plume. A portion of the diluted water moves toward the southeast, which is mainly caused by tidal rectification. This bidirectional plume structure is more evident under certain wind conditions. During the neap tide with the reduced tidal energy, the near-field plume extends farther offshore, and the bulge becomes less evident. These dynamic behaviors are maintained and are fundamentally important in the region around the river mouth even under the summer monsoon and the shelf currents, although in the far field the wind forcing and shelf currents eventually dominate the plume extension.
Wu, Hui; Zhu, Jianrong; Shen, Jian; and Wang, Harry V., "Tidal modulation on the Changjiang River plume in summer" (2011). VIMS Articles. 267.