Dynamics of tidal and non-tidal currents along the southwest continental shelf of India
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The tidal regimes over the continental shelves are often less documented due to lack of coastal water level data. This is of concern since continental shelves rule the global dissipation of tidal energy. The tides along the Southwest Indian shelf are predominantly mixed, semidiurnal in nature. Motion over any continental shelf is governed by the tide-driven oscillatory flow. In this paper, tidal and non-tidal characteristics of the waters of Southwest continental shelf of India are assessed using the observed time-series of water level collected during November- December 2005, from four tide gauge stations distributed along the southwest shelf of India. The tidal amplitudes showed a general decrease from north to south. Harmonic analysis of the tidal constituents showed the prominent tidal constituent to be M sub(2) followed by K sub(1), S sub(2) and O. The non-tidal sea-level along the shelf, showed a northward propagation with periodicities of several days. Local wind patterns and pressure systems play an increasingly important role in controlling the non-tidal circulation in this region.
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