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A study of the heat budget components for the British Columbia and S.E. Alaska coast Elliott, James Elliott

Abstract

Knowledge of the surface heat transfer in coastal inlets would permit studies of their thermal structure and circulation. An assessment is made of data available for calculating the surface heat transfer for the coastal regions of British Columbia and S.E. Alaska. Monthly means of meteorological and oceanographic observations for the years 1961 and 1963 are critically examined for their representativness of conditions that exist over the open water. The location of the observation point is found to be important in choosing values for dew point and wind speed. Formulae for calculating surface heat transfer are examined for their potential applicability to a coastal climate. The calculated net annual surface heat transfer is found to be highest in the southern regions, approximately 90 langleys/day in the Strait of Georgia, and to decrease for more northerly regions, to an approximate balance with no net input in northern Chatham Strait. The annual cycle is found to be strongly modified by fine structure, the radiation balance dominating in summer, the convective losses in winter. Comparison of the calculated surface heat transfer with heat storage indicates that the calculations may be accurate to within 20% of the peak values. The range and shape of the surface temperature cycle was found to reflect the influence of advection, and deep water temperature, as well as the surface heat transfer.

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