A Comparison between Coastal Altimetry Data and Tidal Gauge Measurements in the Gulf of Genoa (NW Mediterranean Sea)

Authors: Picco P., Vignudelli S., Repetti L.
Journal: Journal of Marine Science and Engineering
DOI: 10.3390/jmse8110862
Satellite altimetry data from X-TRACK products were analyzed for an overall assessment of their capability to detect coastal sea level variability in the Ligurian Sea. Near-coastal altimetry data, collected from 2009 to 2016 along track n.044, were compared with simultaneous high frequency sampled data at the tidal station in Genoa (NW Mediterranean Sea). The two time series show a very good agreement: correlation between total sea level elevation from the altimeter and sea level variation from the tidal gauge is 0.92 and root mean square difference is 4.5 cm. Some relevant mismatches can be ascribed to the local high frequency coastal variability due to shelf and harbor oscillation detected at the tidal station, which might not be observed at the location of the altimetry points of measurement. The analysis evidences discrepancies (root mean square difference of 4.7 cm) between model results for open sea tides and harmonic analysis at the tidal station, mainly occurring at the annual and semiannual period. On the contrary, the important part of dynamic atmospheric correction due to the inverse barometer effect, well agrees with that computed at the tidal station.

Keywords: ligurian sea; satellite altimetry; sea level variations; tide gauge measurements

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