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Retention Times in the Coastal Ocean


A. D. Kirwan, Jr.
B. L. Lipphardt, Jr.
J. D. Paduan
C. E. Grosch


Simulated surface particle trajectories in Monterey Bay from archives of hourly surface currents measured by HF radar are used to assess retention times in the bay. Distributions of particle residence times are examined, and particles that remain inside the bay for the longest amount of time are identified. Some thoughts about maximizing near surface retention times in a coastal area are discussed. Maximizing retention time has implications for experimental design, where the goal is optimal sampling of a coastal area by an autonomous vehicle, for example.

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