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University of Plymouth School of Earth, Ocean and Environmental Sciences

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  • This dataset comprises field measurements of waves, currents and beach shape collected from the (nine segmented shore-parallel) breakwaters at Sea Palling, Norfolk between October 2005 and April 2007 as part of a 3-year programme funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council. Field data were collected using Global Positioning System (GPS) surveys, acoustic current meters, video systems, radar, and side-scan sonar imaging of bedforms. These data were used to evaluate the effects of the breakwaters on the low-lying, flood-prone coastal sub-cell between Happisburgh and Waxham over two years. The field measurements were used in combination with computer models to monitor the manner in which the sea defences interact with nearby beaches and to provide enhanced tools for improving the design guidelines for coastal defences. The project partners were the School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia; Department of Civil Engineering, University of Liverpool; Coastal Engineering Group, University of Plymouth; Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory; Halcrow Engineering; HR Wallingford Ltd; and the Environment Agency. The data are stored at the British Oceanographic Data Centre (BODC).

  • The data set comprises a diverse collection of physical, chemical and biological measurements, encompassing over 1000 parameters. There are data from over 1650 conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD)/rosette stations, over 300 core profiles, over 370 sediment trap samples and much, much more. Most of this effort was directed at the region of the east Atlantic margin between La Chapelle Bank and the Goban Spur (between France and Ireland). In addition, there were two secondary areas of interest: the Norwegian Shelf Break just off Tromso and the Iberian Margin, either off Vigo or in the vicinity of the Tagus estuary. Measurements were collected from April 1993 until the end of December 1995 during 55 research cruise legs. Data were collected using a variety of equipment and techniques, including expendable bathythermography (XBTs), CTDs and oceanographic undulators with auxiliary sensors. These hydrographic profiles were accompanied by net hauls, plankton recorder deployments, sediment cores and comprehensive water and air sampling programmes during which a wide variety of chemical and biological parameters were measured. The station data were supplemented by underway measurements of oceanographic and meteorological properties. Results from production and trace metal experiments are also included in the dataset, as are bathymetric data from the British Oceanographic Data Centre (BODC) GEBCO digital Atlas, air-sea flux measurements and data from moored instruments and benthic landers that were deployed for periods from a few weeks to a year. The dataset also includes imagery from satellites, water column and seabed photography, scanning electron micrographs and X-ray photographs. FORTRAN source code for biogeochemical models developed during OMEX I is also included. The aim of the project was to study biogeochemical processes at the shelf break and to quantify the fluxes of material between the shelf and the open ocean. OMEX I involved scientists from 30 institutions in 10 countries. BODC is assembling the data sets collected during OMEX I into its database system and the data are also available on CD-ROM.