Small flux buoy for characterizing marine surface layers
Zúñiga, Carlos A.
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A small easily deployable buoy, Marine-Air-Sea-Flux System (MASFlux), has been developed by the Meteorology Department of the Naval Postgraduate School. This system measures turbulence perturbations, mean wind and thermodynamic profiles, surface wave, and upper ocean temperature simultaneously. This research focuses on testing, documenting, and evaluating the MASFlux performance. The buoy system was tested in the Monterey Bay since August 2012 using small vessels, with the first three deployments focusing on sensor and buoy performance improvements. Concurrent measurements of wave and turbulence fluxes in the lower part of the atmospheric boundary layer during the last three deployments were not subject to apparent sensor errors or excessive mast rotations. Data from these deployments are analyzed here. The two-dimensional wave measurements were compared with those from the Datawell DWR-G4 wave buoys and showed consistent results in all deployments. Turbulent spectra analyses for data before and after buoy motion correction demonstrate the effectiveness in motion correction for the MASFlux. The spectra revealed a significant amount of energy in the atmospheric turbulence at frequencies of the dominant swell. The mean vertical wind profiles also indicated the effects of swell. These initial measurements and results point to great potential for the MASFlux for future air-sea-wave study.
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