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The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Coastal and Marine Science Center in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, is leading an effort to understand the regional sediment dynamics along the coastline of North and South Carolina. As part of the Carolinas Coastal Change Processes Project, a geologic framework study in June of 2008 by the Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center's Sea Floor Mapping Group focused on the seaward limit of Diamond Shoals and provided high resolution bathymetric data, surficial sediment characteristics, and subsurface geologic stratigraphy. These data also provided unprecedented guidance to identify deployment locations for tripods and moorings to investigate the processes that control sediment transport at Diamond Shoals. Equipment was deployed at three sites from early January, 2009 through early May, 2009: north and south of the shoals at 15 m depth, and at the tip at 24 m depth. Many strong storm systems were recorded during that time period. Mounted on the tripods were instruments to measure surface waves, pressure, current velocity, bottom turbulence, suspended-sediment profiles, and sea-floor sand-ripple bedforms. Many instruments were designed and programmed to sample in high resolution in time and space, as fast as 8 Hz hourly bursts and as small as 6 cm bin sizes in near bottom profiles. A second tripod at the north site also held a visual camera system and sonar imaging system which document seafloor bedforms. The region is known for its dynamics, and one of the tripods tipped over towards the end of the experiment. A preliminary look at the data suggests the region is characterized by high energy. Raw data from a burst recorded at the south site on Mar. 26th show instantaneous flow speed at 150 cm/s at 0.5 m above the seabed. This paper reports preliminary highlights of the observations, based on raw data, and lessons learned from a deployment of large tripod systems in such a dynamic location. ??2009 MTS.
Additional Publication Details
High resolution near-bed observations in winter near Cape Hatteras, North Carolina
MTS/IEEE Biloxi - Marine Technology for Our Future: Global and Local Challenges, OCEANS 2009