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Estuarine and coastal ocean processes (ECOP)

Based on first principles of mechanics and thermodynamics, we investigate hydrodynamic, transport and sediment dynamic processes that are key to estuarine and coastal ocean ecosystems, such as tidal estuaries and inlets, lagoons, fjords and seas up to the scale of shelf seas. As major tools, we develop and apply three-dimensional coastal ocean models, combined with theoretical and analytical models and field observations. To comply with first principles such as conservation laws, we develop new and improve existing numerical methods and process parameterisations for ocean models. We see these improved coastal ocean models as modules of regional Earth system models linking waves, sea ice, biogeochemical, benthic, atmospheric, riverine, and land modules, enabling us to study past, present and future states of our environment. Our group also carries out studies of direct human impact on estuaries and coastal oceans, such as environmental effects of structures or discharges. With this and in cooperation with colleagues from IOW and national and international partners, we contribute to all foci of IOW's research programme.