Preliminary Results from the GATE Acoustic Echo Sounder

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  • 1 Wave Propagation Laboratory, ERL/NOAA, Boulder, Colo. 80302
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An acoustic echo sounder mounted on the NOAA ship Oceanographer during GATE proved to be a valuable tool for investigating the structure and dynamics of the tropical marine boundary layer up to 800 m in height. Under suppressed weather conditions the facsimile-recorded echo intensity returns depicted a mixed layer characterized by convective plumes rising from the surface of the water to 400 m. Disturbed weather events resulted in a substantial modification of the boundary layer; layered structures formed that at times limited the depth of the mixed layer to 100 m. The Doppler frequency shift of the acoustic returns made it possible to determine the vertical velocity field.

An acoustic echo sounder mounted on the NOAA ship Oceanographer during GATE proved to be a valuable tool for investigating the structure and dynamics of the tropical marine boundary layer up to 800 m in height. Under suppressed weather conditions the facsimile-recorded echo intensity returns depicted a mixed layer characterized by convective plumes rising from the surface of the water to 400 m. Disturbed weather events resulted in a substantial modification of the boundary layer; layered structures formed that at times limited the depth of the mixed layer to 100 m. The Doppler frequency shift of the acoustic returns made it possible to determine the vertical velocity field.

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