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  • Simulating Microplastics Transport in the Salish Sea

    Salish Sea Model simulates continuous microplastic loading from major outfalls and shows regions of accumulation over time.Read more.

  • Recurring Hypoxia in Salish Sea Reproduced

    Salish Sea Model reproduces recurring hypoxia within the lower Puget Sound, now supports Ecology's Marine Water Quality Implementation Strategy. Read more.

  • Salish Sea Response to Climate Change

    Response of the Salish Sea circulation and biogeochemistry to future (Y2095) climate, hydrology, and ocean chemistry, for the high emmissions RCP8.5 scenario. Read more.

  • Hood Canal Bridge: Environmental Impact Assessment

    Hydrodynamic and water quality modeling to assess the environmental impact of the Hood Canal Bridge, the third largest floating bridge in the world. Read more.

Salish Sea Model Overview

Salish Sea Model domain

Researchers from various state and federal agencies engaged in efforts related to ecosystem management and restoration of the Salish Sea are assessing issues such as population growth, increasing nutrient loads, watershed runoff and pollution, and shoreline development that require hydrodynamic and water quality information. To address these needs, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, in collaboration with Washington State Department of Ecology, developed the Salish Sea Model (SSM). It is a predictive ocean-modeling tool for coastal estuarine research, restoration planning, water-quality management, and climate change response assessment. In addition to assessments of impacts from watershed runoff and wastewater discharges, the SSM is currently being utilized for the analysis of Salish Sea response to sea level rise, climate change, and propagation of global ocean acidification into the inner estuarine environment. The PNNL modeling team conducts numerous applications of this model on behalf of our collaborating partners to assist with nearshore habitat restoration planning and design, analysis in support of re-establishment of fish migration pathways, and assessment of basin-wide water quality impacts.

For more information please contact Dr. Tarang Khangaonkar or any member of the project team.

Surface layer transport in the Northwest Straits

Animation of sea surface salinity



Salish Sea Model Overview

Research & Projects