Observations of radiatively driven convection in a deep lake

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

Observations of radiatively driven convection in deep, ice-free Lake Superior from a set of moorings and an autonomous glider are used to characterize the spatial and temporal scales of the phenomenon. The moored observations show that instability builds at the surface on scales of hours, water near the bottom of the lake begins warming roughly 6 h after sunup, and the water column homogenizes a few hours after sundown. Glider observations suggest the existence of distinct convective chimneys, which carry warmed water to depth with horizontal scales on the order of tens of meters. Patches of photoquenched phytoplankton coincide with patches of anomalously warm water, providing a secondary tracer of water recently in the euphotic zone, and provide insight into the vertical development of convective chimneys. An analysis of the abundance of convective chimneys is used to estimate the lateral scale of convective cells, which appears to be on the order of 50 m.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2152-2160
Number of pages9
JournalLimnology and Oceanography
Volume64
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2019

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convection
lakes
lake
water
euphotic zone
warm water
warming
water column
tracer
Lake Superior
phytoplankton
ice
tracer techniques
chimney
chimneys
cells
analysis

Cite this

Observations of radiatively driven convection in a deep lake. / Austin, Jay A.

In: Limnology and Oceanography, Vol. 64, No. 5, 01.09.2019, p. 2152-2160.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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