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Numerical Modelling of Iceberg Towing for Water Supplies—A Case Study

  • J.G. Job (a1)

Abstracts

The towing of unprotected icebergs from the Antarctic continent (66° S.) to latitude 38° S. has been simulated using an explicit hydrodynamic model and an extended two-dimensional melting model. It was found that nominal towing accelerations in excess of 2 × 10-5 m s-2 were required to deliver ice over this route in most circumstances, and minimum energy consumptions were obtained at accelerations around 10-4 m s-2. Unprotected icebergs could be delivered with about 50% yield to latitude 38° S., but the rate of deterioration in the warm waters indicates that protection would be required for longer journeys. The towing simulation was most sensitive to north-south current components, the total towing distance and the rate of iceberg deterioration. Efforts directed towards locating suitable icebergs in the region 50° S. to 60° S., and towards increasing knowledge of the changing current patterns in the Southern Ocean would be most valuable, as would a knowledge of the mechanisms and rates of deterioration of icebergs in warm seas.

Résumé

On a simulé le remorquage d’icebergs non protégés depuis le continent Antarctique (66° S.) à la latitude 38° S. en utilisant un modèle hydrodynamique explicite en un modèle de fusion bidimensionnel. On a trouvé que les accélérations dépassant 2 × 10-5 s-2 pour acheminer la glace sur tout l'itinéraire, dans la plupart des cas et les consommations minimum en énergie ont été obtenues autour de 10-4 m s-2. Des icebergs nun protégés pouvant être acheminés avec un rendement d'environ 50% jusqu'à la latitude de 38° S., mais la vitesse de destruction dans les eaux chaudes est telle qu'une protection serait nécessaire pour des voyages plus lointains. La simulation du remorquage est surtout sensible aux composantes Nord Sud des courants marins, à la distance de remorquage et à la vitesse de désagrégation de l'iceberg. Il serait utile de faire porter les efforts sur la localisation d’icebergs convenables dans la région des 50° à 60° S. et vers une meilleure connaissance des variations des courants marins dans l'Océan Antarctique, comme il serait bon de mieux connaître le mécanisme et la vitesse de désagrégation des icebergs dans les mers chaudes.

Zusammenfassung

Das Schleppen ungeschützter Eisberge vom antarktischen Kontinent (66° S.) auf eine Breite von 38° S. wurde mit Hilfe eines expliziten hydrodynamischen Modelles und eines erweiterten, zweidimensionalern Abschmelzimodelles simuliert. Es zeigt sich, dass zumeist Nenn-Schleppbeschleunigungen von mehr als 2 × 10-5 m s-2 benötigt werden, um Eis über diese Strecke zu befördern; der geringste Energieverbrauch ergibt sich bel etwa 10-5 m s-2. Ungeschützte Eisberge könnten mit einem Nutzeffekt von ca. 50%, in 38° südlicher Breite gebracht werden, doch der Verfall in warmen Gewässern würde einem Schutz für längere Strecken erfordern. Die Schlepp-Simulation erwies sich als empfindlich gegen Nord-Süd-Kumponenten der Meeresströme, gegen die Gesamtlänge des Schleppweges und die Verfallsrate der Eisberge. Anstrengungen zur Lokahlisierung geeigneter Eisberge im Gebiet zwischen 50° und 60° Süd und zur besseren Kenntnis der wechselnden Strömungsmuster im Südlichen Ozcan wären ebenso wertvoll wie die Kenntnis des Mechanismus und der Geschwindigkeit des Verfalls von Eisbergen in warmen Gewässern.

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References

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Numerical Modelling of Iceberg Towing for Water Supplies—A Case Study

  • J.G. Job (a1)

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