【摘要】：To simulate the dynamic process of total nitrogen(TN) in seas, numerical modelling combined with the adjoint method is implemented in this study. Because nonpoint source terms(ST) and initial values(IV) of TN are essential but difficult to determine, the adjoint method was applied to a numerical model, and the ST and IV terms of TN were inverted via routine monitoring data in the Bohai Sea. In twin experiments, the adjoint method was capable of inverting the prescribed spatio-temporally distributed ST and the spatial distributed IV. In practical experiments, the results demonstrated that the simulation precision with ST inversion was higher than that with IV inversion and was accurate with joint initial values and source term(IST) inversion. This result indicates that nonpoint source TN is essential for the simulation of TN concentration. Furthermore, the simulated results indicate that the pollution in three bays of the Bohai Sea is rather severe. The model in this study is not specific to the Bohai Sea and can be generalized to other areas, such as the Beibu Gulf. These findings may assist in the development of cost-effective controls for accidental or planned industrial pollutant releases into coastal waters.