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Ocean Science An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-2020-57
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-2020-57
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  23 Jun 2020

23 Jun 2020

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A revised version of this preprint is currently under review for the journal OS.

Accuracy assessment of global internal tide models using satellite altimetry

Loren Carrere1, Brian K. Arbic2, Brian Dushaw3, Gary D. Egbert4, Svetlana Y. Erofeeva4, Florent Lyard5, Richard D. Ray6, Clément Ubelmann7, Edward Zaron8, Zhongxiang Zhao9, Jay F. Shriver10, Maarten C. Buijsman11, and Nicolas Picot12 Loren Carrere et al.
  • 1CLS, Ramonville-Saint-Agne, 31450, France
  • 2University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
  • 3Girona, 17004, Spain
  • 4Department Geology and Geophysics, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331-5503, USA
  • 5LEGOS-OMP laboratory, Toulouse, 31401, France
  • 6NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771, USA
  • 7Ocean Next, La Terrasse, 38660, France
  • 8Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Portland State University, Portland, OR 97207-0751, USA
  • 9Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA
  • 10Naval Research Laboratory, Stennis Space Center, MS, USA
  • 11Division of Marine Science, University of Southern Mississippi, Stennis Space Center, MS 39529, USA
  • 12CNES, Toulouse, 31400, France

Abstract. In order to access the targeted ocean signal, altimeter measurements are corrected for several geophysical parameters among which the ocean tide correction is one of the most critical, but the internal tide signature at the surface are not yet corrected globally.

Internal tides can have a signature of several cm at the surface with wavelengths about 50–250 km for the first mode and even smaller scales for higher order modes. The goals of the upcoming Surface Water Ocean Topography (SWOT) mission and other high-resolution ocean measurements make the correction of these small scale signals a challenge, as the separation of all tidal variability from other oceanic signals becomes mandatory.

In this context, several scientific teams are working on the development of new internal tide models, taking advantage of the very long altimeter time series now available, which represent an unprecedented and valuable global ocean database. The internal tide models presented here focus on the coherent internal tide signal and they are of three types: empirical models based upon analysis of existing altimeter missions, an assimilative model, and a three-dimensional hydrodynamic model.

A detailed comparison and validation of these internal tide models is proposed using existing satellite altimeter databases. The analysis focuses on the four main tidal constituents M2, K1, O1 and S2. The validation process is based on a statistical analysis of multi-mission altimetry including Jason-2 and Cryosphere Satellite-2 data, taking advantage of the long-term altimeter databases available. The results show a significant altimeter variance reduction when using internal tide corrections on all ocean regions where internal tides are generating/propagating. A complementary spectral analysis also gives some estimation of the performance of each model as a function of wavelength, and some insight into the residual non-stationary part of internal tides in the different regions of interest.

Loren Carrere et al.

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Loren Carrere et al.

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Short summary
Internal tides can have a signature of several cm at the ocean surface and need to be corrected from altimeter measurements. This paper presents a detailed validation of several internal tides models using existing satellite altimeter databases. The analysis focuses on the main diurnal and semi-diurnal tidal constituents. Results show the interest of the methodology proposed, the quality of the internal tide models tested and their positive contribution for estimating an accurate sea level.
Internal tides can have a signature of several cm at the ocean surface and need to be corrected...
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