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Dr Ata Suanda

Contact detailsAtaSuanda

Office 310 Castle Street, room 152
Tel 64 3 479 5369
Email ata.suanda@otago.ac.nz

Academic qualifications

BA, Wesleyan University (2003)
MS, Oregon State University (2009)
PhD, Oregon State University (2014)

Research interests

  • Circulation and water properties in coastal, estuarine, and nearshore environments.
  • The interaction of physical processes with biogeochemistry in the coastal ocean.
  • Tides, internal waves, wind- and wave-driven physics.
  • Numerical models of ocean circulation.

Research projects

My research focuses on physical processes in the coastal ocean. This work includes running idealized and realistic numerical models and maintaining oceanographic observations.

Coastal modelling

Headland
Example of simulated headland surface temperature and circulation with wave wind, wave, and tidal forcing

Winds, waves, and tides drive coastal circulation with wide reaching impacts on pollutant dispersal, nutrient delivery, and the connectivity of marine organisms.

Oceanographic modelling across a wide range of space and time scales is a collaborative effort and intersects physical oceanography, computer science, and model evaluation and data analysis.

Ongoing work from California, USA: 

https://scripps.ucsd.edu/projects/innershelf/modeling/

For coastal New Zealand, we collaborate with the Moana project:

https://www.moanaproject.org/

Transient rip currents

Rip
Plan view of simulated instantaneous sea level (left) and a measure of circulation, vorticity (right). The shoreline is on the right and the region of wave breaking (surfzone) is identified by the dashed black line.

Random, directionally-spread breaking waves drive episodic offshore flows (transient rip currents).

These flows have implications for swimmer safety and are currently not represented in wave-averaged models.

We use a wave-resolving model funwaveC as a numerical laboratory to characterize transient rip currents and determine scaling relations to background wave conditions.

Coastal ocean observations

Anchor
Plough anchor used for coastal mooring, 2018. Mounted to the shank is a high-frequency wave and tide recorder.

Understanding complex coastal ocean dynamics requires persistent and innovative observational methods.

In collaboration with other Otago faculty and the Marine Science RV fleet, we look to continue and expand upon the long history of observations of the Otago coastal ocean.

Courses

  • OCEN 321 Ocean Physics and Modelling

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Publications

Spydell, M. S., Feddersen, F., & Suanda, S. (2019). Inhomogeneous turbulent dispersion across the nearshore induced by surfzone eddies. Journal of Physical Oceanography. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-18-0102.1

O’Callaghan, J., Stevens, C., Roughan, M., Cornelisen, C., Sutton, P., Garrett, S., … Smith, R. O., … Suanda, S. H., … Macdonald, H. (2019). Developing an integrated ocean observing system for New Zealand. Frontiers in Marine Science, 6, 143. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2019.00143

Suanda, S. H., Feddersen, F., Spydell, M. S., & Kumar, N. (2018). The effect of barotropic and baroclinic tides on three-dimensional coastal dispersion. Geophysical Research Letters. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1029/2018GL079884

Colosi, J. A., Kumar, N., Suanda, S. H., Freismuth, T. M., & MacMahan, J. H. (2018). Statistics of internal tide bores and internal solitary waves observed on the inner contintental shelf off Point Sal, California. Journal of Physical Oceanography, 48, 123-143. doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-17-0045.1

Suanda, S. H., Feddersen, F., & Kumar, N. (2017). The effect of barotropic and baroclinic tides on coastal stratification and mixing. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 122(10), 156-173. doi: 10.1002/2017JC013379

Journal - Research Article

Spydell, M. S., Feddersen, F., & Suanda, S. (2019). Inhomogeneous turbulent dispersion across the nearshore induced by surfzone eddies. Journal of Physical Oceanography. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-18-0102.1

Suanda, S. H., Feddersen, F., Spydell, M. S., & Kumar, N. (2018). The effect of barotropic and baroclinic tides on three-dimensional coastal dispersion. Geophysical Research Letters. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1029/2018GL079884

Colosi, J. A., Kumar, N., Suanda, S. H., Freismuth, T. M., & MacMahan, J. H. (2018). Statistics of internal tide bores and internal solitary waves observed on the inner contintental shelf off Point Sal, California. Journal of Physical Oceanography, 48, 123-143. doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-17-0045.1

Suanda, S. H., Feddersen, F., & Kumar, N. (2017). The effect of barotropic and baroclinic tides on coastal stratification and mixing. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 122(10), 156-173. doi: 10.1002/2017JC013379

Kumar, N., Feddersen, F., Suanda, S., Uchiyama, Y., & McWilliams, J. (2016). Mid- to inner-shelf coupled ROMS-SWAN model-data comparison of currents and temperature: Diurnal and semidiurnal variability. Journal of Physical Oceanography, 46, 841-862. doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-15-0103.1

Suanda, S. H., Kumar, N., Miller, A. J., Di Lorenzo, E., Haas, K., Cai, D., … Feddersen, F. (2016). Wind relaxation and a coastal bouyant plume north of Pt. Conception, CA: Observations, simulations, and scalings. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 121(10), 7455-7475. doi: 10.1002/2016JC011919

Suanda, S. H., Perez, S., & Feddersen, F. (2016). Evaluation of a source-function wavemaker for generating random directionally spread waves in the sea-swell band. Coastal Engineering, 114, 220-232. doi: 10.1016/j.coastaleng.2016.04.006

Suanda, S. H., & Feddersen, F. (2015). A self-similar scaling for cross-shelf exchange driven by transient rip currents. Geophysical Research Letters, 42(13), 5427-5434. doi: 10.1002/2015GL063944

Suanda, S. H., & Barth, J. A. (2015). Semidiurnal barolinic tides on the Central Oregon inner shelf. Journal of Physical Oceanography, 45, 2640-2659. doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-14-0198.1

Suanda, S. H., Barth, J. A., Holman, R. A., & Stanley, J. (2014). Shore-based video observations of nonlinear internal waves across the inner shelf. Journal of Atmospheric & Oceanic Technology, 31, 714-728. doi: 10.1175/JTECH-D-13-00098.1

Suanda, S. H., Barth, J. A., & Woodson, C. B. (2011). Diurnal heat balance for northern Monterey Bay inner shelf. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 116(C9), C09030. doi: 10.1029/2010JC006894

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Journal - Research Other

O’Callaghan, J., Stevens, C., Roughan, M., Cornelisen, C., Sutton, P., Garrett, S., … Smith, R. O., … Suanda, S. H., … Macdonald, H. (2019). Developing an integrated ocean observing system for New Zealand. Frontiers in Marine Science, 6, 143. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2019.00143

More publications...