2022 CSDMS meeting-087


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Implementation of a Hydrodynamic - Sediment Transport Model for the Beaufort Sea Shelf

Brianna Undzis, University of Colorado Boulder Boulder Colorado, United States. Brianna.Undzis@colorado.edu
Julia Moriarty, University of Colorado Boulder Boulder Colorado, United States. Julia.Moriarty@colorado.edu

Sediment dynamics on Arctic shelves can impact coastal geomorphology, habitat suitability, and biogeochemical cycling, and are sensitive to changes in sea ice extent. Variability in coastal erosion, for example, has been related to variations in waves due to changes in sea ice extent, as well as water temperature. Yet, it remains unclear how changes in sea ice extent will impact hydrodynamic and sediment transport conditions on the continental shelf, motivating this study. To analyze this, we are using a coupled hydrodynamic-sediment transport numerical model, the Regional Ocean Modeling System (ROMS) - Community Sediment Transport Modeling System (CSTMS). The model is implemented for the Alaskan Beaufort Sea shelf and currently accounts for winds. Ongoing work includes accounting for waves, sea ice, and setting up open boundary conditions. In order to analyze variations in hydrodynamics and sediment transport, the model will be run for two open water seasons representing time periods where sea ice retreats 100-300 km offshore. Analysis will focus on spatial variations in current velocities, waves, and bed shear stresses, as well as how model estimates vary between the two time periods. Future work involves accounting for sediment transport in the model and performing sensitivity analyses to better understand how a lengthening open water season may influence the shelf sediment dynamics.