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Ocean tides and sea level rise


Barotropic surface elevation of the leading diurnal and semidiurnal ocean tides were computed from a non-linear shallow water model (Einšpigel and Martinec, 2017) on a quasi-global 1/12° finite difference grid. Solutions were produced for both present-day conditions and bathymetries (i.e., global water depths) adjusted for the effect of relative sea level rise (SLR). The primary motivation for creating these data was to model and understand possible secular trends in ocean tides which have been reported in many coastal areas. If you find the data useful, please cite the paper of Schindelegger et al. (2018).

More details:

Effects of self-attraction and loading were incorporated into the model through time step-wise spherical harmonic transformations, leading to high accuracy of the tidal solutions both in shallow water and the deep ocean (14.6 cm and 4.4 cm, respectively, for M2 w.r.t. TPXO8 for present-day conditions). To mimic the effects of relative sea level rise, water depths were modified to allow for changes of the sea surface (i.e., absolute sea level rise) and crustal motion associated with ongoing glacial isostatic adjustment processes (GIA). Projections of the adopted bathymetry trends were made to globally averaged SLR of 0.1 m, 0.5 m, and 2.0 m. Details on the hydrodynamic model configuration, the adopted boundary conditions, and the validation of the forward runs against tide gauge data can be found in Schindelegger et al. (2018, “SEA2018” in the filenames below).


Tidal constituents:

M2, S2, K1, O1 (no barometric forcing for S2)

Model domain:

86°S to 84°N


treated as invariant (“no-flooding” scenario)

Default bathymetry:


GIA model:

ICE_6G (VM5a)

Absolute sea level trends:

AVISO multi-mission product 1993-2016


Download section:

ftp-link to netcdf files

Further model results are available from Michael Schindelegger upon request.


Schindelegger, M., Green, J.A.M., Wilmes, S.-B., Haigh, I.D. (2018), Can we model the effect of observed sea level rise on tides? Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 123, in press, doi:

Einšpigel, D., Martinec, Z. (2017), Time-domain modeling of global ocean tides generated by the full lunisolar potential. Ocean Dynamics, 67, 165-189. doi: 10.1007/s10236-016-1016-1.