Marine Ecosystem Dynamics Modeling Laboratory

The Water Quality

To understand water quality in Georgia’s complex estuarine ecosystems, it requires us to quantitatively estimate the transport of water, nutrients, dissolved and particulate materials, and their internal biogeochemical transformation. A tool that integrates our understanding of the impact of these processes on the marine ecology and estuarine water quality in Georgia estuaries is needed to visualize results of these processes. It is imperative to develop a coupled fully three-dimensional (3D) prognostic hydrodynamic and water quality model to quantitatively study the complex physical, biological, and geochemical processes in Georgia estuaries and the impacts of these processes on water quality.
The simulated distributions and animations of dissolved oxygen (DO), chlorophyll a and Ammonia here show the interaction between river fresh water inflow and salt water intrusion. To correctly simulated the ecosystem in the estuary region, especially long term simulation, the property of conservation must be strictly kept in the model. The resolution of the small tidal crack and flooding/drying are also very important. The finite-volume model (FVCOM) is the best choice for the coastal water quality management model tool of Georgia estuaries.

Image 1: Example of the temporal varation and spatial istribution of the model-predicted DO concentration in the Satilla River Estuary.

Click the image to view the animation of the surface DO concentration.

Image 2: Example of the temporal variation and spatial distribution of the model-predicted Chl-a concentration in the Satilla River Estuary.

Click the image to view the animation of the surface Chl-a concentration.

Image 3: Example of the temporal variation and spatial distribution of the model-predicted ammonia concentrations in the Satilla River Estuary.


Click the image to view the animation of the surface Ammonia concentration.

Posted on January 16, 2014