Sousa, M.C.; Ribeiro, A.S.; Des, M.; Mendes, R.; Alvarez, I.; Gomez-Gesteira, M., and Dias, J.M., 2018. Integrated high-resolution numerical model for the NW Iberian Peninsula coast and main estuarine systems. In: Shim, J.-S.; Chun, I., and Lim, H.S. (eds.), Proceedings from the International Coastal Symposium (ICS) 2018 (Busan, Republic of Korea). Journal of Coastal Research, Special Issue No. 85, pp. 66–70. Coconut Creek (Florida), ISSN 0749-0208.
The NW Iberian Peninsula (NWIP) coast includes a large diversity of estuarine systems such as Rias, river estuaries and coastal lagoons, being characterized by a high primary production, responsible for the significant fisheries and aquaculture productivity of the region. Thus, the main objective of this study is the development of a novel integrated high-resolution circulation and hydrographic coastal model designed with Delft3D-flow and applied for a large and complex area integrating the NWIP continental shelf and main estuarine systems. A domain decomposition technique was adopted to resolve the complex geomorphology in the study area. This approach allows local refinement in estuarine systems with the capability of two-way communication of water level, currents and hydrographic properties between those areas and the coastal ocean. The model was successfully validated using sea surface elevation, salinity and water temperature data from various observational sources, including remotely sensed images. Numerical calculations show good agreement with the observed water level in the entire domain. In addition, measured salinity and water temperature are well reproduced by the model. Results from two real events (summer 2005 and winter 2012–2013) were compared with remote sensing products, revealing that predictions adequately represent the hydrographic patterns observed. Results showed a complex interaction among estuarine systems as well with the adjacent coast, in addition to the accuracy of the integrated high-resolution numerical model developed in reproducing the hydrodynamic and thermohaline patterns of the NWIP coast and main estuarine systems.