Analysis of tidal currents in the North Sea from shipboard acoustic Doppler current profiler data
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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- Geophysical Institute 
North Sea tidal currents are determined by applying harmonic analysis to ship-borne acoustic Doppler current profiler data recorded from 1999 to 2016, covering large areas of the northern North Sea. Direct current measurement data sets of this magnitude are rare in the otherwise well investigated North Sea, and thus it is a valuable asset in studying and expanding our understanding of its tidal currents and circulation in general. The harmonic analysis is applied to a least squares fit of the current observations at a set of knot points. Results from the harmonic analysis compare favorably to tidal parameters estimated from observations from moored instruments. The analysis shows that the tides are characterized by strong semi-diurnal component, with amplitudes of the principal Lunar constituent ranging from 1.6 cm/s in the Skagerrak to 67 cm/s in the Fair Isle Channel. Diurnal tides are found to be approximately one fifth the strength of the predominant semi-diurnal constituent. Output from a regional barotropic tide model compares well to tidal current determined from the harmonic analysis of the Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler data.