A Software Package and Hardware Tools for in situ Experiments in a Lagrangian Reference Frame

Andrea M. Doglioli Aix Marseille Université, CNRS/INSU, IRD, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, UM 110, Marseille, and Université du Sud Toulon-Var, CNRS/INSU, IRD, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, UM 110, La Garde, France

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Francesco Nencioli Aix Marseille Université, CNRS/INSU, IRD, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, UM 110, Marseille, and Université du Sud Toulon-Var, CNRS/INSU, IRD, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, UM 110, La Garde, France

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Anne A. Petrenko Aix Marseille Université, CNRS/INSU, IRD, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, UM 110, Marseille, and Université du Sud Toulon-Var, CNRS/INSU, IRD, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, UM 110, La Garde, France

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Gilles Rougier Aix Marseille Université, CNRS/INSU, IRD, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, UM 110, Marseille, and Université du Sud Toulon-Var, CNRS/INSU, IRD, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, UM 110, La Garde, France

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Jean-Luc Fuda IRD, US191 IMAGO, Nouméa, New Caledonia

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Nicolas Grima Laboratoire de Physique des Océans, UMR 6523, CNRS-IFREMER-IRD-UBO, Brest, France

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Abstract

The Lagrangian Transport Experiment (LATEX) was developed to study the influence of coupled physical and biogeochemical dynamics at the meso- and submesoscales on the transfers of matter and heat between the coastal zone and the open ocean. One of the goals of the Latex10 field experiment, conducted during September 2010 in the Gulf of Lion (northwest Mediterranean), was to mark a dynamical mesoscale feature by releasing a passive tracer [sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)] together with an array of Lagrangian buoys. The goal was to release the tracer in an initial patch as homogeneous as possible in the horizontal, and to study its turbulent mixing and dispersion while minimizing the contribution due to advection. For that, it was necessary to continuously adjust the vessel route in order to remain as closely as possible in the Lagrangian reference frame moving with the investigated mesoscale structure. To accomplish this task, a methodology and software were developed, which are presented here. The software is equipped with a series of graphical and user-friendly accessories and the entire package for MATLAB can be freely downloaded (http://mio.pytheas.univ-amu.fr/~doglioli).

Corresponding author address: Andrea M. Doglioli, Aix-Marseille Université, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, Campus de Luminy, Case 901, 13288 Marseille CEDEX 9, France. E-mail: andrea.doglioli@univ-amu.fr

Abstract

The Lagrangian Transport Experiment (LATEX) was developed to study the influence of coupled physical and biogeochemical dynamics at the meso- and submesoscales on the transfers of matter and heat between the coastal zone and the open ocean. One of the goals of the Latex10 field experiment, conducted during September 2010 in the Gulf of Lion (northwest Mediterranean), was to mark a dynamical mesoscale feature by releasing a passive tracer [sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)] together with an array of Lagrangian buoys. The goal was to release the tracer in an initial patch as homogeneous as possible in the horizontal, and to study its turbulent mixing and dispersion while minimizing the contribution due to advection. For that, it was necessary to continuously adjust the vessel route in order to remain as closely as possible in the Lagrangian reference frame moving with the investigated mesoscale structure. To accomplish this task, a methodology and software were developed, which are presented here. The software is equipped with a series of graphical and user-friendly accessories and the entire package for MATLAB can be freely downloaded (http://mio.pytheas.univ-amu.fr/~doglioli).

Corresponding author address: Andrea M. Doglioli, Aix-Marseille Université, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, Campus de Luminy, Case 901, 13288 Marseille CEDEX 9, France. E-mail: andrea.doglioli@univ-amu.fr
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