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Valente, AS, da Silva, JCB (2009). On the observability of the fortnightly cycle of the Tagus estuary turbid plume using MODIS ocean colour images. JOURNAL OF MARINE SYSTEMS, 75(2-Jan), 131-137.

Using three years (2003 to 2005) of MODIS-Aqua normalized water-leaving radiance at 551 nm this paper shows a fortnightly cycle in the Tagus estuary turbid plume. The Tagus estuary is one of the largest estuaries of the west coast of Europe and is located in the most populated area of Portugal, including the capital Lisbon, The turbid plume has been detected by the backscattering characteristics of the surface waters in the vicinity of the estuary mouth. In fortnightly scales, the turbid plume has smaller dimensions during and after neap tides and higher dimensions during and after spring tides. This is most probably associated with the fortnightly spring-neap tidal cycle and the consequent increase in turbidity inside the estuary during spring tides. During the summer weak spring tides (tidal amplitude approximately 2.5 m) no turbid plume is observed for an entire fortnightly cycle. Outside the summer months, precipitation, river discharge and winds, were found to increase the turbid area, but the fortnightly cycle appears to be superimposed on the large time-scale variability, and present throughout the year. (c) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.



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