Gulf Of Tehuantepec Experiment, Coupled Development of Ocean Waves and Boundary Layers (aka OceanWaves)

01/25/2004 - 02/29/2004
Project Location
Gulf of Tehuantapec, off southern Mexico's Pacific coast

When high pressure is over the Gulf of Mexico in the Caribbean, a circulation sets up forcing strong winds through the Chivela mountain pass, creating an off-shore jet over the Pacific Ocean. The wind can blow out for 500-600 km offshore for several days giving rise to strongly-forced fetch-limited wave conditions. In February 2004, groups from Scripps Institution of Oceanography (UCSD), UC Irvine, NASA/EG&G, NCAR and the National Autonomous University of Mexico collaborated to conduct the Gulf of Tehuantepec Experiment (GOTEX) to measure the coupled development of the atmospheric boundary layer and the surface wave field out over the Gulf of Tehuantapec, off southern Mexico's Pacific coast. The NSF/NCAR C-130Q Hercules aircraft was equipped with a suite of sensors for measuring surface waves and wave breaking, including a downward-looking scanning lidar (Airborne Terrain Mapper, or ATM), video cameras, inertial motion sensors, and radome gust probe wind measurements. (Taken from Melville, W.K. "Extreme wave events in the Gulf of Tehuantapec" Pp2 [Available online April 2010 from])


Principal Investigators:

  • K. Melville
  • Carl Friehe

Project Manager:

  • Allen Schanot NCAR/EOL/RAF

Data Manager: