Towards An Operational Forecasting System For The Rio De La Plata Estuary Surface Elevation And Currents.

Claudia Simionato, Walter Dragani, Mario Nuñez, Manfred Engel


Abstract. A set of three 3-D one-way nested models based on the baroclinic HamSOM
(Hamburg Shelf Ocean Model) code for tidal propagation and storm surges from the
Argentinean Continental Shelf to the Río de la Plata estuary has been developed. The set of
models was constructed as a first step of the development of a warning and management
system. In that sense they were built in a very realistic manner, representing an important
advance with respect to previous works. In this paper some HamSOM/CIMA model hierarchy
validation experiments are shown and discussed. Model results have been validated by using
tidal gauge data and current meter observations. The model has shown an outstanding
capability to reproduce the tidal propagation from the continental shelf to the Río de la Plata
Estuary. A very good agreement between observations and model results is observed for both,
harmonic constants and tidal currents. When wind stress and atmospheric pressure is included
as meteorological forcing for our model, very good quality simulations are obtained. It
indicates that our model already became an appropriate diagnostic tool for studies at the Río
de la Plata. Results are very encouraging about the possibilities of the model to become a tool
for forecasting and management.

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