Dynamically constrained ensemble perturbations – application to tides on the West Florida Shelf
Abstract. A method is presented to create an ensemble of perturbations that satisfies linear dynamical constraints. A cost function is formulated defining the probability of each perturbation. It is shown that the perturbations created with this approach take the land-sea mask into account in a similar way as variational analysis techniques. The impact of the land-sea mask is illustrated with an idealized configuration of a barrier island. Perturbations with a spatially variable correlation length can be also created by this approach. The method is applied to a realistic configuration of the West Florida Shelf to create perturbations of the M2 tidal parameters for elevation and depth-averaged currents. The perturbations are weakly constrained to satisfy the linear shallow-water equations. Despite that the constraint is derived from an idealized assumption, it is shown that this approach is applicable to a non-linear and baroclinic model. The amplitude of spurious transient motions created by constrained perturbations of initial and boundary conditions is significantly lower compared to perturbing the variables independently or to using only the momentum equation to compute the velocity perturbations from the elevation.