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  • Altimetry  (1)
  • Barotropic instability  (1)
  • Eastern boundary currents  (1)
  • Ocean-atmosphere interaction  (1)
  • Profilers, oceanic  (1)
  • 1
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution September 2008
    Description: Coupled ocean/atmosphere simulations exhibit systematicwarm biases over the SouthWest African (SWA) coastal region. Recent investigations indicate that coastal ocean dynamics may play an important role in determining the SST patterns, but none of them provide a detailed analysis. In this study, I analyze simulations produced both by coupled models and by idealized models. Then results are interpreted on the basis of a theoretical framework. Finally the conclusion is reached that the insufficient resolution of the ocean component in the coupled model is responsible for the warm biases over the SWA coastal region. The coarse resolution used in the ocean model has an artificially stretched coastal side-wall boundary layer, which induces a smaller upwelling velocity in the boundary layer. The vertical heat transport decreases even when the volume transport is unchanged because of its nonlinear relationship with the magnitude of the upwelling velocity. Based on the scaling of the idealized model simulations, a simplified calculation shows that the vertical heat transport is inversely proportional to the zonal resolution over the coastal region. Therefore, increasing the horizontal resolution can considerably improve the coastal SST simulation, and better resolve the coastal dynamics.
    Keywords: Ocean-atmosphere interaction ; Computer simulation
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
    Type: Thesis
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Geophysical Union, 2012. This article is posted here by permission of American Geophysical Union for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Geophysical Research Letters 39 (2012): L10601, doi:10.1029/2012GL051861.
    Description: A simple barotropic quasi-geostrophic model is used to demonstrate that instabilities radiated from an unstable eastern boundary current can generate zonal striations in the ocean interior with realistic wavelengths and amplitudes. Nonlinear transfer of energy from the more unstable trapped modes is important for radiating modes to overcome friction. The dynamics shown here are generic enough to point to the eastern boundary current as a likely source of the observed striations extending from oceanic eastern boundaries.
    Description: Y-S Fellowship when this study was done, and by NASA grant NNX12AD47G when this paper was prepared. M. Spall is supported by grant OCE-0926656. G. Flierl is supported by grant OCE-0752346.
    Description: 2012-11-16
    Keywords: Rossby waves ; Barotropic instability ; Eastern boundary currents ; Radiating instabilities ; Zonal jets ; Zonal striations
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
    Type: Article
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2018-08-07
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2018. This article is posted here by permission of American Meteorological Society for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology 35 (2018): 281-297, doi:10.1175/JTECH-D-17-0076.1.
    Description: The wavenumber spectrum of sea surface height (SSH) is an important indicator of the dynamics of the ocean interior. While the SSH wavenumber spectrum has been well studied at mesoscale wavelengths and longer, using both in situ oceanographic measurements and satellite altimetry, it remains largely unknown for wavelengths less than ~70 km. The Surface Water Ocean Topography (SWOT) satellite mission aims to resolve the SSH wavenumber spectrum at 15–150-km wavelengths, which is specified as one of the mission requirements. The mission calibration and validation (CalVal) requires the ground truth of a synoptic SSH field to resolve the targeted wavelengths, but no existing observational network is able to fulfill the task. A high-resolution global ocean simulation is used to conduct an observing system simulation experiment (OSSE) to identify the suitable oceanographic in situ measurements for SWOT SSH CalVal. After fixing 20 measuring locations (the minimum number for resolving 15–150-km wavelengths) along the SWOT swath, four instrument platforms were tested: pressure-sensor-equipped inverted echo sounders (PIES), underway conductivity–temperature–depth (UCTD) sensors, instrumented moorings, and underwater gliders. In the context of the OSSE, PIES was found to be an unsuitable tool for the target region and for SSH scales 15–70 km; the slowness of a single UCTD leads to significant aliasing by high-frequency motions at short wavelengths below ~30 km; an array of station-keeping gliders may meet the requirement; and an array of moorings is the most effective system among the four tested instruments for meeting the mission’s requirement. The results shown here warrant a prelaunch field campaign to further test the performance of station-keeping gliders.
    Description: The authors would like to acknowledge the funding sources: the SWOT mission (JW, LF, DM); NASA Projects NNX13AE32G, NNX16AH76G, and NNX17AH54G (TF); and NNX16AH66G and NNX17AH33G (BQ). AF and MF were funded by the Keck Institute for Space Studies (which is generously supported by the W. M. Keck Foundation) through the project Science-driven Autonomous and Heterogeneous Robotic Networks: A Vision for Future Ocean Observations (
    Description: 2018-08-07
    Keywords: Altimetry ; In situ oceanic observations ; Profilers, oceanic ; Satellite observations ; Sensitivity studies ; Planning
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
    Type: Article
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