The Alderney Race: General hydrodynamic and particular features

Type Article
Date 2020-08
Language English
Author(s) Bailly Du Bois P1, Dumas Franck2, Morillon M1, Furgerot L3, Voiseux C1, Poizot E3, 4, Mear Y3, 4, Bennis Anne-Claire5
Affiliation(s) 1 : Laboratoire de Radioécologie de Cherbourg, IRSN-LRC, Rue Max Pol Fouchet B.P. 10, 50130 Cherbourg en Cotentin, France
2 : Service hydrographique et océanographique de la marine – Shom, Brest, France
3 : LUSAC, Laboratoire Universitaire des Sciences Appliquées de Cherbourg, Univ. Normandie, Cherbourgen- Cotentin, France
4 : Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers, Intechmer, Cherbourg-en-Cotentin, France
5 : Normandie Univ., UNICAEN, CNRS, UNIROUEN, Morphodynamique Continentale et Côtière (M2C), Caen, France
Source Philosophical Transactions Of The Royal Society A-mathematical Physical And Engineering Sciences (1364-503X) (Royal Society), 2020-08 , Vol. 378 , N. 2178 , P. 20190492 (22p.)
DOI 10.1098/rsta.2019.0492
WOS© Times Cited 9
Keyword(s) Alderney Race, La Hague Cape, current, tide, hydrodynamics, model

This study presents an overview of the main hydrodynamic features of the Alderney Race strait based on in-situ measurements and 2D hydrodynamic model simulations. The strait encompasses a large amplitude of tidal properties (tidal range and tidal wave propagation) and particularly strong currents exceeding 5 m.s-1 with associated counter currents and gyres. Variations in depth, sea bottom roughness, coastal topography and current orientation around the La Hague Cape provide access to a large variety of original hydrodynamic regimes. Some are revealed as locations with a 0.4 m drop in the mean sea level associated with strong average currents. A resonance effect associated with the offshore currents can also be observed close to the coasts. The "St Martin whistle" occurs in a bay whose gyre center oscillates with a reversal of the measured current every 5 – 7 minutes. The Alderney Race represents a particular area of interest for coastal hydrodynamic studies. The available in-situ measurement datasets are rich with recordings of: sea levels; Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler (ADCP) current profiles; surface radar currents; waves; dye experiments; surface and in-depth dissolved tracer surveys. Combined with hydrodynamic models, the complexity of this area can be further understood and knowledge of hydrodynamic process and forcing parameters can be refined, which can be applied to other coastal areas.

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How to cite 

Bailly Du Bois P, Dumas Franck, Morillon M, Furgerot L, Voiseux C, Poizot E, Mear Y, Bennis Anne-Claire (2020). The Alderney Race: General hydrodynamic and particular features. Philosophical Transactions Of The Royal Society A-mathematical Physical And Engineering Sciences, 378(2178), 20190492 (22p.). Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :