Surface Current Study, Northwestern Gulf of Mexico



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Texas A&M University Department of Oceanography


The method of determining current directions by using drift bottles has been in use for many years. The primary advantages of the drift bottle method is that it is inexpensive and relatively simple to conduct. The disadvantages are that only the drop and stranding points and the date of the drop are accurately known. The precise path of the bottle and its exact travel time will never be known and the time of the pick up represents a maximum travel time. In sparsely populated areas the bottle may have lain undiscovered for some time. However, by assuming straight line travel path minimum average velocities can be determined which, while not exact, will giver reasonable insights into surface current velocities and directions over the general area being considered.


35 pages; available for download at the link below.


hydrocarbon, surface water, surface current speed, natural hydrocarbon, carbon cycle, Gulf of Mexico, currents