The depth-averaged residual circulation on the North West European Shelf, August 1988 - October 1989

Data set information

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Data holding centreProudman Oceanographic Laboratory
CountryUnited Kingdom  United Kingdom
Time periodFrom August 1988 to October 1989
Geographical area

North West European Shelf, in particular the southern North Sea


Vertical velocity of the water column (currents); Horizontal velocity of the water column (currents); Sea level; Bathymetry and Elevation




This numerical model data set represents the first results of a study relating to the depth-averaged circulation of the north west European shelf during the NERC North Sea Project survey period (August 1988 - October 1989). The data originate from two separate but identical models. Most of the meteorologically induced currents and elevations (surge data) were obtained from the operational storm surge model which runs operationally at the UK Meteorological Office, and are archived at POL. Gaps in this data set have been filled by running an identical model at POL using meteorological data obtained from the Meteorological Office. The same model was used to reproduce the tides over the 15 month period. Hourly values of tide and surge (elevation and horizontal components of current) have been combined to produce the residual circulation of the North Sea and the seasonal flow around the north west European continental shelf. The data for the 15 month North Sea survey period were sorted and stored separately as monthly files of tide and surge, giving 30 files (15 files containing hourly values of tide and 15 files containing the hourly values of meteorologically induced surge). A sub-grid of the model area was chosen to encompass the southern North Sea, from 51° N to 57° N and from 3° W to 9° E. This sub-grid comprises 18 rows and 24 columns - a total of 432 grid boxes. A grid box measures 1/2 ° longitude by 1/3 ° latitude. Each data value is associated with the centre of the grid box it represents. In this area daily (25 hour) means and variances of the horizontal components of total (tide plus surge) current were calculated and subsequently stored as a digital atlas. Daily mean residual current data covering the period 01 August 1988 to 31 October 1989 fit on two 1.44 Mbyte floppy disks.

OriginatorsProudman Oceanographic Laboratory

Proctor, R., and Smith, J.A. (1991) The depth-averaged residual circulation on the North West European Shelf, August 1988 - October 1989., Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory Report No. 20, 255pp.

OrganisationProudman Oceanographic Laboratory
ContactThe Director

Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory
Joseph Proudman Building 6 Brownlow Street
L3 5DA
United Kingdom

Telephone+44 151 795 4800
Collating centreBritish Oceanographic Data Centre
Local identifier1054004
Global identifier737
Last revised2009-10-15