Below is a scientific rendering of our simulation results for Hurricane Michael on the high-resolution NGOM3 mesh. This effort is a product of the XSEDE ECSS Program. Thanks to David Bock at the University of Illinois National Center for Supercomputing Applications for being part of this project!
Abstract Hurricane Michael made landfall near Mexico Beach, FL on October 10 as a Category 5 storm. Measurements of peak water levels revealed storm surge as high as to 4.37 m (NAVD88). Areas surrounding Mexico Beach, Port St. Joe, St. George Island, and Apalachicola experienced wide-spread flooding and extensive damage. To gain an understanding of storm surge and related overland flooding, we simulate the water level and wave response from Hurricane Michael using a tightly-coupled ADCIRC+SWAN model of the northern Gulf of Mexico (NGOM), NGOM3. The ADCIRC (Advanced Circulation) code computes water levels and depth-averaged currents via the shallow water equations while SWAN (Simulating Waves Nearshore) computes relative frequency and direction of wind-waves from the action balance equation. Both models utilize the same NGOM3 unstructured finite element mesh (5.5 million nodes) that spans the western north Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, and Gulf of Mexico and includes detailed representation of the Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida panhandle coastal floodplain. Model resolution ranges from 20 m – 200 m across the overland regions and describes the significant hydraulic features such as bay/inlet systems, sounds, estuaries, coastal river, and the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway that can convey or inhibit storm surge flows. The NGOM3 model is a result of over a decade of effort and improvements. A custom visualization system is used to visualize a variety of parameters including wave height, water surface elevation, wind, and current.