Tidal dynamics of shallow estuaries and lagoons is a complex matter that has attracted the attention of a large number of researchers over the last few decades. The main purpose of the present work is to study the intricate tidal dynamics of the Tagus estuary, which states as the largest estuary of the Iberian Peninsula and one of the most important wetlands in Portugal and Europe. Tagus has large areas of low depth and a remarkable geomorphology, both determining the complex propagation of tidal waves along the estuary of unknown manner. A non-linear two-dimensional vertically integrated hydrodynamic model was considered to be adequate to simulate its hydrodynamics and an application developed from the SIMSYS2D model was applied to study the tidal propagation along the estuary. The implementation and calibration of this model revealed its accuracy to predict tidal properties along the entire system. Several model runs enabled the analysis of the local variations in tidal dynamics, through the interpretation of amplitude and phase patterns of the main tidal constituents, tidal asymmetry, tidal ellipses, form factor and tidal dissipation. Results show that Tagus estuary tidal dynamics is extremely dependent on an estuarine resonance mode for the semi-diurnal constituents that induce important tidal characteristics. Besides, the estuarine coastline features and topography determines the changes in tidal propagation along the estuary, which therefore result essentially from a balance between convergence/divergence and friction and advection effects, besides the resonance effects. © 2013 Dias et al.
Dias, J. M., Valentim, J. M., & Sousa, M. C. (2013). A numerical study of local variations in tidal regime of Tagus estuary, Portugal. PLoS ONE, 8(12). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0080450