A nonhydrostatic version of FVCOM: 1. Validation experiments Academic Article uri icon


  • The unstructured grid finite volume coastal ocean model (FVCOM) system has been expanded to include nonhydrostatic dynamics. This addition uses the factional step method with both split mode explicit and semi-implicit schemes. The unstructured grid finite volume method, combined with a correction of the final free surface from its intermediate value with inclusion of nonhydrostatic effects, efficiently reduces numerical damping and thus ensures second-order accuracy of the solutions with local/global volume conservation. Numerical experiments have been made to fully validate the nonhydrostatic FVCOM, including surface standing and solitary waves in idealized flat- and sloping-bottomed channels in homogeneous conditions, the density adjustment problem for lock exchange flow in a flat-bottomed channel, and two-layer internal solitary wave breaking on a sloping shelf. The model results agree well with the relevant analytical solutions and laboratory data. These validation experiments demonstrate that the nonhydrostatic FVCOM is capable of resolving complex nonhydrostatic dynamics in coastal and estuarine regions.

publication date

  • November 13, 2010