Title

Modelling residence-time response to freshwater input in Apalachicola Bay, Florida, USA

Document Type

Article

Date of Original Version

10-30-2002

Abstract

Residence time of an estuary can be used to estimate the rate of removal of freshwater and pollutants from river inflow. In this study, a calibrated three-dimensional hydrodynamic model was used to determine residence time in response to the change of freshwater input in Apalachicola Bay. The bay is about 40 km long and 7 km wide, with an average 3 m water depth. Through hydrodynamic model simulations, the spatial and temporal salinity and the total freshwater volume in the bay were calculated. Then the freshwater fraction method was used to estimate the residence time. Results indicate that the residence time in Apalachicola Bay typically ranges between 3 and 10 days for the daily freshwater input ranging from 177 m3/s to 4561 m3/s. Regression analysis of model results shows that an exponential regression equation can be used to correlate the estuarine residence time to changes of freshwater input. © 2002 John Wiley and Sons, Ltd.

Publication Title

Hydrological Processes

Volume

16

Issue

15

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