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  • Baroclinic flows  (23)
  • Wind stress  (22)
  • American Meteorological Society  (44)
  • MDPI Publishing
  • 1
    Publication Date: 2019-08-30
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2019. 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 Physical Oceanography 49(7), (2019): 1889-1904, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-19-0053.1.
    Description: A high-resolution numerical model, together with in situ and satellite observations, is used to explore the nature and dynamics of the dominant high-frequency (from one day to one week) variability in Denmark Strait. Mooring measurements in the center of the strait reveal that warm water “flooding events” occur, whereby the North Icelandic Irminger Current (NIIC) propagates offshore and advects subtropical-origin water northward through the deepest part of the sill. Two other types of mesoscale processes in Denmark Strait have been described previously in the literature, known as “boluses” and “pulses,” associated with a raising and lowering of the overflow water interface. Our measurements reveal that flooding events occur in conjunction with especially pronounced pulses. The model indicates that the NIIC hydrographic front is maintained by a balance between frontogenesis by the large-scale flow and frontolysis by baroclinic instability. Specifically, the temperature and salinity tendency equations demonstrate that the eddies act to relax the front, while the mean flow acts to sharpen it. Furthermore, the model reveals that the two dense water processes—boluses and pulses (and hence flooding events)—are dynamically related to each other and tied to the meandering of the hydrographic front in the strait. Our study thus provides a general framework for interpreting the short-time-scale variability of Denmark Strait Overflow Water entering the Irminger Sea.
    Description: MAS was supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) under Grants OCE-1558742 and OCE-1534618. RSP, PL, and DM were supported by NSF under Grants OCE-1558742 and OCE-1259618. WJvA was supported by the Helmholtz Infrastructure Initiative FRAM. TWNH and MA were supported by NSF under Grants OCE-1633124 and OCE-118123.
    Description: 2020-07-01
    Keywords: Baroclinic flows ; Frontogenesis/frontolysis ; Meridional overturning circulation ; Ocean dynamics ; Topographic effects
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2019-03-17
    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 Physical Oceanography 48 (2018): 2209-2219, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-18-0070.1.
    Description: Published observations of subinertial ocean current variability show that the vertical structure is often well described by a vertical mode that has a node of horizontal velocity at the bottom rather than the traditional node of vertical velocity. The theory of forced and free linear Rossby waves in a continuously stratified ocean with a sloping bottom and bottom friction is treated here to see if frictional effects can plausibly contribute to this phenomenon. For parameter values representative of the mesoscale, bottom dissipation by itself appears to be too weak to be an explanation, although caution is required because the present approach uses a linear model to address a nonlinear phenomenon. One novel outcome is the emergence of a short-wave, bottom-trapped, strongly damped mode that is present even with a flat bottom.
    Description: Partial funding for this article is provided by the National Science Foundation Physical Oceanography section through Award OCE-1433953.
    Description: 2019-03-17
    Keywords: Baroclinic flows ; Ekman pumping/transport ; Rossby waves
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2018-08-26
    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 Physical Oceanography 48 (2018): 479-509, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-16-0283.1.
    Description: Lateral submesoscale processes and their influence on vertical stratification at shallow salinity fronts in the central Bay of Bengal during the winter monsoon are explored using high-resolution data from a cruise in November 2013. The observations are from a radiator survey centered at a salinity-controlled density front, embedded in a zone of moderate mesoscale strain (0.15 times the Coriolis parameter) and forced by winds with a downfront orientation. Below a thin mixed layer, often ≤10 m, the analysis shows several dynamical signatures indicative of submesoscale processes: (i) negative Ertel potential vorticity (PV); (ii) low-PV anomalies with O(1–10) km lateral extent, where the vorticity estimated on isopycnals and the isopycnal thickness are tightly coupled, varying in lockstep to yield low PV; (iii) flow conditions susceptible to forced symmetric instability (FSI) or bearing the imprint of earlier FSI events; (iv) negative lateral gradients in the absolute momentum field (inertial instability); and (v) strong contribution from differential sheared advection at O(1) km scales to the growth rate of the depth-averaged stratification. The findings here show one-dimensional vertical processes alone cannot explain the vertical stratification and its lateral variability over O(1–10) km scales at the radiator survey.
    Description: S. Ramachandran acknowledges support from the National Science Foundation through award OCE 1558849 and the U.S. Office of Naval Research, Grants N00014-13-1-0456 and N00014-17- 1-2355. A. Tandon acknowledges support from the U.S. Office of Naval Research, Grants N00014-13-1-0456 and N00014-17-1-2355. J. T. Farrar and R. A. Weller were supported by the U.S. Office of Naval Research, Grant N00014-13-1-0453, to collect the UCTD data and process theUCTD and shipboard meteorological data. J. Nash, J. Mackinnon, and A. F. Waterhouse acknowledge support from the U. S. Office of Naval Research, Grants N00014-13-1-0503 and N00014-14-1-0455. E. Shroyer acknowledges support from the U. S. Office of Naval Research, Grants N00014-14-10236 and N00014-15- 12634. A. Mahadevan acknowledges support fromthe U. S. Office of Naval Research, Grant N00014-13-10451. A. J. Lucas and R. Pinkel acknowledge support from the U. S. Office of Naval Research, Grant N00014-13-1-0489.
    Description: 2018-08-26
    Keywords: Indian Ocean ; Baroclinic flows ; Potential vorticity ; Fronts ; Monsoons ; Oceanic mixed layer
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2018-11-29
    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 Physical Oceanography 48 (2018): 2799-2827, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-18-0057.1.
    Description: The fjords that connect Greenland’s glaciers to the ocean are gateways for importing heat to melt ice and for exporting meltwater into the ocean. The transport of heat and meltwater can be modulated by various drivers of fjord circulation, including freshwater, local winds, and shelf variability. Shelf-forced flows (also known as the intermediary circulation) are the dominant mode of variability in two major fjords of east Greenland, but we lack a dynamical understanding of the fjord’s response to shelf forcing. Building on observations from east Greenland, we use numerical simulations and analytical models to explore the dynamics of shelf-driven flows. For the parameter space of Greenlandic fjords, we find that the fjord’s response is primarily a function of three nondimensional parameters: the fjord width over the deformation radius (W/Rd), the forcing time scale over the fjord adjustment time scale, and the forcing amplitude (shelf pycnocline displacements) over the upper-layer thickness. The shelf-forced flows in both the numerical simulations and the observations can largely be explained by a simple analytical model for Kelvin waves propagating around the fjord. For fjords with W/Rd 〉 0.5 (most Greenlandic fjords), 3D dynamics are integral to understanding shelf forcing—the fjord dynamics cannot be approximated with 2D models that neglect cross-fjord structure. The volume flux exchanged between the fjord and shelf increases for narrow fjords and peaks around the resonant forcing frequency, dropping off significantly at higher- and lower-frequency forcing.
    Description: This work was funded by NSF Grant OCE-1536856 and by the NOAA Climate and Global Change Postdoctoral Fellowship.
    Keywords: Estuaries ; Glaciers ; Baroclinic flows ; Coastal flows ; Kelvin waves ; Regional models
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2018-06-08
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2017. 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 Physical Oceanography 47 (2017): 2927-2947, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-17-0083.1.
    Description: Motivated by observations in Hudson shelf valley showing stronger onshore than offshore flows, this study investigates wind-driven flows in idealized shallow shelf valleys. This first part of a two-part sequence focuses on the mechanism of the asymmetrical flow response in a valley to along-shelf winds of opposite directions. Model simulations show that (i) when the wind is in the opposite direction to coastal-trapped wave (CTW) phase propagation, the shelf flow turns onshore in the valley and generates strong up-valley transport and a standing meander on the upstream side (in the sense of CTW phase propagation) of the valley, and (ii) when the wind is in the same direction as CTW phase propagation, the flow forms a symmetric onshore detour pattern over the valley with negligible down-valley transport. Comparison of the modeled upstream meanders in the first scenario with CTW characteristics confirms that the up-valley flow results from CTWs being arrested by the wind-driven shelf flow establishing lee waves. The valley bathymetry generates an initial excessive onshore pressure gradient force that drives the up-valley flow and induces CTW lee waves that sustain the up-valley flow. When the wind-driven shelf flow aligns with CTW phase propagation, the initial disturbance generated in the valley propagates away, allowing the valley flow to adjust to roughly follow isobaths. Because of the similarity in the physical setup, this mechanism of arrested CTWs generating stronger onshore than offshore flow is expected to be applicable to the flow response in slope canyons to along-isobath background flows of opposite directions.
    Description: WGZ and SJL were supported by the National Science Foundation through GrantOCE1154575.WGZ is also supported by the NSF Grant OCE 1634965 and SJL by NSF Grant OCE 1558874.
    Description: 2018-06-08
    Keywords: Ocean circulation ; Topographic effects ; Transport ; Vertical motion ; Waves, oceanic ; Wind stress
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  • 6
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    American Meteorological Society
    Publication Date: 2018-02-16
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2017. 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 Physical Oceanography 47 (2017): 879-894, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-16-0196.1.
    Description: Models show that surface cooling over a sloping continental shelf should give rise to baroclinic instability and thus tend toward gravitationally stable density stratification. Less is known about how alongshore winds affect this process, so the role of surface momentum input is treated here by means of a sequence of idealized, primitive equation numerical model calculations. The effects of cooling rate, wind amplitude and direction, bottom slope, bottom friction, and rotation rate are all considered. All model runs lead to instability and an eddy field. While instability is not strongly affected by upwelling-favorable alongshore winds, wind-driven downwelling substantially reduces eddy kinetic energy, largely because the downwelling circulation plays a similar role to baroclinic instability by flattening isotherms and so reducing available potential energy. Not surprisingly, cross-shelf winds appear to have little effect. Analysis of the model runs leads to quantitative relations for the wind effect on eddy kinetic energy for the equilibrium density stratification (which increases as the cooling rate increases) and for eddy length scale.
    Description: This research was supported by the National Science Foundation Physical Oceanography Program through Grant OCE-1433953.
    Keywords: Continental shelf/slope ; Baroclinic flows ; Eddies ; Instability
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  • 7
    Publication Date: 2018-10-16
    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 Physical Oceanography 48 (2018): 883-904, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-17-0084.1.
    Description: The dynamics controlling the along-valley (cross shelf) flow in idealized shallow shelf valleys with small to moderate Burger number are investigated, and analytical scales of the along-valley flows are derived. This paper follows Part I, which shows that along-shelf winds in the opposite direction to coastal-trapped wave propagation (upwelling regime) force a strong up-valley flow caused by the formation of a lee wave. In contrast, along-shelf winds in the other direction (downwelling regime) do not generate a lee wave and consequently force a relatively weak net down-valley flow. The valley flows in both regimes are cyclostrophic with 0(1) Rossby number. A major difference between the two regimes is the along-shelf length scales of the along-valley flows L. In the upwelling regime Ls, depends on the valley width W, and the wavelength lambda(1w) of the coastal-trapped lee wave arrested by the along-shelf flow U-s. In the downwelling regime L depends on the inertial length scale U-s|'f and W-c. The along-valley velocity scale in the upwelling regime, given by V-u approximate to root pi H-c/H-s integral W-c lambda(1w)/2 pi L-x (1+L-x(2)/L-c(2))(-1) e(-(pi Wc)/(lambda 1w),) is based on potential vorticity (PV) conservation and lee-wave dynamics (Hs and H, are the shelf and valley depth scales, respectively, and fis the Coriolis parameter). The velocity scale in the downwelling regime, given by |v(d)| approximate to (H-s/H-s)[1 + (L-x(2)/L-x(2))](-1) fL, is based on PV conservation. The velocity scales are validated by the numerical sensitivity simulations and can be useful for observational studies of along -valley transports. The work provides a framework for investigating cross -shelf transport induced by irregular shelf bathymetry and calls for future studies of this type under realistic environmental conditions and over a broader parameter space.
    Description: Both WGZ and SJL were supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) through Grant OCE 1154575.WGZis also supported by the NSF Grant OCE 1634965 and SJL by NSF Grant OCE 1558874.
    Description: 2018-10-16
    Keywords: Ocean circulation ; Topographic effects ; Upwelling/downwelling ; Waves, oceanic ; Wind stress ; Ocean models
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  • 8
    Publication Date: 2018-11-01
    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 Physical Oceanography 48 (2018): 2457-2475, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-17-0186.1.
    Description: A subpolar marginal sea, like the Nordic seas, is a transition zone between the temperature-stratified subtropics (the alpha ocean) and the salinity-stratified polar regions (the beta ocean). An inflow of Atlantic Water circulates these seas as a boundary current that is cooled and freshened downstream, eventually to outflow as Deep and Polar Water. Stratification in the boundary region is dominated by a thermocline over the continental slope and a halocline over the continental shelves, separating Atlantic Water from Deep and Polar Water, respectively. A conceptual model is introduced for the circulation and water mass transformation in a subpolar marginal sea to explore the potential interaction between the alpha and beta oceans. Freshwater input into the shelf regions has a slight strengthening effect on the Atlantic inflow, but more prominently impacts the water mass composition of the outflow. This impact of freshwater, characterized by enhancing Polar Water outflow and suppressing Deep Water outflow, is strongly determined by the source location of freshwater. Concretely, perturbations in upstream freshwater sources, like the Baltic freshwater outflow into the Nordic seas, have an order of magnitude larger potential to impact water mass transports than perturbations in downstream sources like the Arctic freshwater outflow. These boundary current dynamics are directly related to the qualitative stratification in transition zones and illustrate the interaction between the alpha and beta oceans.
    Description: This research was supported by the Research Council of Norway project NORTH. Support for the publication was provided by the University of Bergen. Ocean Outlook has supported a research visit for EL to Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute where much of the current work has been carried out. Support forMAS was provided by the National Science Foundation Grant OCE-1558742.
    Keywords: Continental shelf/slope ; Baroclinic flows ; Boundary currents ; Buoyancy ; Freshwater ; Thermohaline circulation
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  • 9
    Publication Date: 2018-03-08
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2017. 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 Climate 30 (2017): 8061-8080, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-16-0834.1.
    Description: During the southwest monsoons, the Arabian Sea (AS) develops highly energetic mesoscale variability associated with the Somali Current (SC), Great Whirl (GW), and cold filaments (CF). The resultant high-amplitude anomalies and gradients of sea surface temperature (SST) and surface currents modify the wind stress, triggering the so-called mesoscale coupled feedbacks. This study uses a high-resolution regional coupled model with a novel coupling procedure that separates spatial scales of the air–sea coupling to show that SST and surface currents are coupled to the atmosphere at distinct spatial scales, exerting distinct dynamic influences. The effect of mesoscale SST–wind interaction is manifested most strongly in wind work and Ekman pumping over the GW, primarily affecting the position of GW and the separation latitude of the SC. If this effect is suppressed, enhanced wind work and a weakened Ekman pumping dipole cause the GW to extend northeastward, delaying the SC separation by 1°. Current–wind interaction, in contrast, is related to the amount of wind energy input. When it is suppressed, especially as a result of background-scale currents, depth-integrated kinetic energy, both the mean and eddy, is significantly enhanced. Ekman pumping velocity over the GW is overly negative because of a lack of vorticity that offsets the wind stress curl, further invigorating the GW. Moreover, significant changes in time-mean SST and evaporation are generated in response to the current–wind interaction, accompanied by a noticeable southward shift in the Findlater Jet. The significant increase in moisture transport in the central AS implies that air–sea interaction mediated by the surface current is a potentially important process for simulation and prediction of the monsoon rainfall.
    Description: This work is supported by ONR (N00014-15-1-2588 and N00014-17-1-2398), NSF (OCE- 1419235), and NOAA (NA15OAR4310176).
    Description: 2018-03-08
    Keywords: Indian Ocean ; Wind stress ; Ekman pumping ; Monsoons ; Air-sea interaction ; Coupled models
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  • 10
    Publication Date: 2017-07-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2017. 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 Physical Oceanography 47 (2017): 85-100, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-15-0234.1.
    Description: Observations and analyses of two tidally recurring, oblique, internal hydraulic jumps at a stratified estuary mouth (Columbia River, Oregon/Washington) are presented. These hydraulic features have not previously been studied due to the challenges of both horizontally resolving the sharp gradients and temporally resolving their evolution in numerical models and traditional observation platforms. The jumps, both of which recurred during ebb, formed adjacent to two engineered lateral channel constrictions and were identified in marine radar image time series. Jump occurrence was corroborated by (i) a collocated sharp gradient in the surface currents measured via airborne along-track interferometric synthetic aperture radar and (ii) the transition from supercritical to subcritical flow in the cross-jump direction via shipborne velocity and density measurements. Using a two-layer approximation, observed jump angles at both lateral constrictions are shown to lie within the theoretical bounds given by the critical internal long-wave (Froude) angle and the arrested maximum-amplitude internal bore angle, respectively. Also, intratidal and intertidal variability of the jump angles are shown to be consistent with that expected from the two-layer model, applied to varying stratification and current speed over a range of tidal and river discharge conditions. Intratidal variability of the upchannel jump angle is similar under all observed conditions, whereas the downchannel jump angle shows an additional association with stratification and ebb velocity during the low discharge periods. The observations additionally indicate that the upchannel jump achieves a stable position that is collocated with a similarly oblique bathymetric slope.
    Description: We acknowledge the financial support of the Office of Naval Research under Awards N00014-10-1-0932 and N00014-13-1-0364.
    Description: 2017-07-04
    Keywords: Estuaries ; Baroclinic flows ; Internal waves ; Microwave observations ; Remote sensing
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  • 11
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2017. 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 Physical Oceanography 47 (2017): 1921-1939, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-16-0146.1.
    Description: The role of surface gravity waves in structuring the air–sea momentum flux is examined in the middle reaches of Chesapeake Bay. Observed wave spectra showed that wave direction in Chesapeake Bay is strongly correlated with basin geometry. Waves preferentially developed in the direction of maximum fetch, suggesting that dominant wave frequencies may be commonly and persistently misaligned with local wind forcing. Direct observations from an ultrasonic anemometer and vertical array of ADVs show that the magnitude and direction of stress changed across the air–sea interface, suggesting that a stress divergence occurred at or near the water surface. Using a numerical wave model in combination with direct flux measurements, the air–sea momentum flux was partitioned between the surface wave field and the mean flow. Results indicate that the surface wave field can store or release a significant fraction of the total momentum flux depending on the direction of the wind. When wind blew across dominant fetch axes, the generation of short gravity waves stored as much as 40% of the total wind stress. Accounting for the storage of momentum in the surface wave field closed the air–sea momentum budget. Agreement between the direction of Lagrangian shear and the direction of the stress vector in the mixed surface layer suggests that the observed directional difference was due to the combined effect of breaking waves producing downward sweeps of momentum in the direction of wave propagation and the straining of that vorticity field in a manner similar to Langmuir turbulence.
    Description: This work was supported by National Science Foundation Grants OCE-1061609 and OCE-1339032.
    Description: 2018-01-13
    Keywords: Atmosphere-ocean interaction ; Coastal flows ; Mixing ; Momentum ; Wind stress ; Wind waves
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  • 12
    Publication Date: 2017-06-07
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2017. 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 Physical Oceanography 47 (2017): 1061-1075, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-16-0248.1.
    Description: A major challenge in modeling the circulation over coral reefs is uncertainty in the drag coefficient because existing estimates span two orders of magnitude. Current and pressure measurements from five coral reefs are used to estimate drag coefficients based on depth-average flow, assuming a balance between the cross-reef pressure gradient and the bottom stress. At two sites wind stress is a significant term in the cross-reef momentum balance and is included in estimating the drag coefficient. For the five coral reef sites and a previous laboratory study, estimated drag coefficients increase as the water depth decreases consistent with open channel flow theory. For example, for a typical coral reef hydrodynamic roughness of 5 cm, observational estimates, and the theory indicate that the drag coefficient decreases from 0.4 in 20 cm of water to 0.005 in 10 m of water. Synthesis of results from the new field observations with estimates from previous field and laboratory studies indicate that coral reef drag coefficients range from 0.2 to 0.005 and hydrodynamic roughnesses generally range from 2 to 8 cm. While coral reef drag coefficients depend on factors such as physical roughness and surface waves, a substantial fraction of the scatter in estimates of coral reef drag coefficients is due to variations in water depth.
    Description: The Red Sea field program was supported by Awards USA 00002 and KSA 00011 made by KAUST to S. Lentz and J. Churchill. The Palau field program was funded by NSF Award OCE-1220529.
    Keywords: Ocean ; Currents ; Wind stress ; Boundary layer ; Sea level ; Tides
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  • 13
    Publication Date: 2017-09-14
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2017. 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 Physical Oceanography 47 (2017): 1205-1220, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-16-0258.1.
    Description: The linkage among total exchange flow, entrainment, and diffusive salt flux in estuaries is derived analytically using salinity coordinates, revealing the simple but important relationship between total exchange flow and mixing. Mixing is defined and quantified in this paper as the dissipation of salinity variance. The method uses the conservation of volume and salt to quantify and distinguish the diahaline transport of volume (i.e., entrainment) and diahaline diffusive salt flux. A numerical model of the Hudson estuary is used as an example of the application of the method in a realistic estuary with a persistent but temporally variable exchange flow. A notable finding of this analysis is that the total exchange flow and diahaline salt flux are out of phase with respect to the spring–neap cycle. Total exchange flow reaches its maximum near minimum neap tide, but diahaline salt transport reaches its maximum during the maximum spring tide. This phase shift explains the strong temporal variation of stratification and estuarine salt content through the spring–neap cycle. In addition to quantifying temporal variation, the method reveals the spatial variation of total exchange flow, entrainment, and diffusive salt flux through the estuary. For instance, the analysis of the Hudson estuary indicates that diffusive salt flux is intensified in the wider cross sections. The method also provides a simple means of quantifying numerical mixing in ocean models because it provides an estimate of the total dissipation of salinity variance, which is the sum of mixing due to the turbulence closure and numerical mixing.
    Description: T. Wang was supported by the Open Research Fund of State Key Laboratory of Estuarine and Coastal Research (Grant SKLEC-KF201509), the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (Grant 2017B03514), and the Strategic Priority Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (Grant XDA11010203). W. R. Geyer was supported by NSF Grant OCE 0926427 and ONR Grant N00014-16-1-2948. P. MacCready was supported by NSF Grant OCE-1634148.
    Description: 2017-09-14
    Keywords: Baroclinic flows ; Conservation equations ; Diapycnal mixing ; Diffusion ; Entrainment ; Mixing
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  • 14
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    American Meteorological Society
    Publication Date: 2017-04-07
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2016. 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 Physical Oceanography 46 (2016): 3139-3154, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-16-0042.1.
    Description: Downfront, or downwelling favorable, winds are commonly found over buoyant coastal plumes. It is known that these winds can result in mixing of the plume with the ambient water and that the winds influence the transport, spatial extent, and stability of the plumes. In the present study, the interaction of the Ekman velocity in the surface layer and baroclinic instability supported by the strong horizontal density gradient of the plume is explored with the objective of understanding the potential vorticity and buoyancy budgets. The approach makes use of an idealized numerical model and scaling theory. It is shown that when winds are present the weak stratification resulting from vertical mixing and the strong baroclinicity of the front results in near-zero average potential vorticity q. For weak to moderate winds, the reduction of q by diapycnal mixing is balanced by the generation of q through the geostrophic stress term in the regions of strong horizontal density gradients and stable stratification. However, for very strong winds the wind stress overwhelms the geostrophic stress and leads to a reduction in q, which is balanced by the vertical mixing term. In the absence of winds, the geostrophic stress dominates mixing and the flow rapidly restratifies. Nonlinearity, extremes of relative vorticity and vertical velocity, and mixing are all enhanced by the presence of a coast. Scaling estimates developed for the eddy buoyancy flux, the surface potential vorticity flux, and the diapycnal mixing rate compare well with results diagnosed from a series of numerical model calculations.
    Description: This study was supported by NSF Grants OCE-1433170 (MAS) and OCE-1459677 (LNT).
    Description: 2017-04-07
    Keywords: Coastal flows ; Ekman pumping/transport ; Mesoscale processes ; Wind stress
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  • 15
    Publication Date: 2017-06-09
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2016. 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 Physical Oceanography 46 (2016): 2143-2156, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-15-0213.1.
    Description: Measurements of pressure near the surface in conditions of wind sea and swell are reported. Swell, or waves that overrun the wind, produces an upward flux of energy and momentum from waves to the wind and corresponding attenuation of the swell waves. The estimates of growth of wind sea are consistent with existing parameterizations. The attenuation of swell in the field is considerably smaller than existing measurements in the laboratory.
    Keywords: Circulation/ Dynamics ; Pressure ; Wind stress ; Wind waves ; Physical Meteorology and Climatology ; Air-sea interaction
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  • 16
    Publication Date: 2016-05-01
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2015. 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 Physical Oceanography 45 (2015): 2773–2789, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-15-0031.1.
    Description: Tidal oscillatory salt transport, induced by the correlation between tidal variations in salinity and velocity, is an important term for the subtidal salt balance under the commonly used Eulerian method of salt transport decomposition. In this paper, its mechanisms in a partially stratified estuary are investigated with a numerical model of the Hudson estuary. During neap tides, when the estuary is strongly stratified, the tidal oscillatory salt transport is mainly due to the hydraulic response of the halocline to the longitudinal variation of topography. This mechanism does not involve vertical mixing, so it should not be regarded as oscillatory shear dispersion, but instead it should be regarded as advective transport of salt, which results from the vertical distortion of exchange flow obtained in the Eulerian decomposition by vertical fluctuations of the halocline. During spring tides, the estuary is weakly stratified, and vertical mixing plays a significant role in the tidal variation of salinity. In the spring tide regime, the tidal oscillatory salt transport is mainly due to oscillatory shear dispersion. In addition, the transient lateral circulation near large channel curvature causes the transverse tilt of the halocline. This mechanism has little effect on the cross-sectionally integrated tidal oscillatory salt transport, but it results in an apparent left–right cross-channel asymmetry of tidal oscillatory salt transport. With the isohaline framework, tidal oscillatory salt transport can be regarded as a part of the net estuarine salt transport, and the Lagrangian advective mechanism and dispersive mechanism can be distinguished.
    Description: Tao Wang was supported by the Open Research Fund of State Key Laboratory of Estuarine and Coastal Research (Grant SKLEC-KF201509) and Chinese Scholarship Council. Geyer was supported by by NSF Grant OCE 0926427. Wensheng Jiang was supported by NSFC-Shandong Joint Fund for Marine Science Research Centers (Grant U1406401).
    Description: 2016-05-01
    Keywords: Geographic location/entity ; Estuaries ; Circulation/ Dynamics ; Baroclinic flows ; Dispersion ; Shear structure/flows ; Atm/Ocean Structure/ Phenomena ; Diapycnal mixing ; Models and modeling ; Regional models
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
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  • 17
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    American Meteorological Society
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2015. 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 Physical Oceanography 45 (2015): 546–561, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-14-0082.1.
    Description: Model studies and observations in the Hudson River estuary indicate that frontogenesis occurs as a result of topographic forcing. Bottom fronts form just downstream of lateral constrictions, where the width of the estuary increases in the down-estuary (i.e., seaward) direction. The front forms during the last several hours of the ebb, when the combination of adverse pressure gradient in the expansion and baroclinicity cause a stagnation of near-bottom velocity. Frontogenesis is observed in two dynamical regimes: one in which the front develops at a transition from subcritical to supercritical flow and the other in which the flow is everywhere supercritical. The supercritical front formation appears to be associated with lateral flow separation. Both types of fronts are three-dimensional, with strong lateral gradients along the flanks of the channel. During spring tide conditions, the fronts dissipate during the flood, whereas during neap tides the fronts are advected landward during the flood. The zone of enhanced density gradient initiates frontogenesis at multiple constrictions along the estuary as it propagates landward more than 60 km during several days of neap tides. Frontogenesis and frontal propagation may thus be essential elements of the spring-to-neap transition to stratified conditions in partially mixed estuaries.
    Description: Support for this research was provided by NSF Grant OCE 0926427.
    Description: 2015-08-01
    Keywords: Circulation/ Dynamics ; Baroclinic flows ; Coastal flows ; Frontogenesis/frontolysis ; Fronts
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  • 18
    Publication Date: 2017-01-05
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2015. 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 Physical Oceanography 45 (2015): 2006–2024, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-14-0234.1.
    Description: The effects of wind-driven whitecapping on the evolution of the ocean surface boundary layer are examined using an idealized one-dimensional Reynolds-averaged Navier–Stokes numerical model. Whitecapping is parameterized as a flux of turbulent kinetic energy through the sea surface and through an adjustment of the turbulent length scale. Simulations begin with a two-layer configuration and use a wind that ramps to a steady stress. This study finds that the boundary layer begins to thicken sooner in simulations with whitecapping than without because whitecapping introduces energy to the base of the boundary layer sooner than shear production does. Even in the presence of whitecapping, shear production becomes important for several hours, but then inertial oscillations cause shear production and whitecapping to alternate as the dominant energy sources for mixing. Details of these results are sensitive to initial and forcing conditions, particularly to the turbulent length scale imposed by breaking waves and the transfer velocity of energy from waves to turbulence. After 1–2 days of steady wind, the boundary layer in whitecapping simulations has thickened more than the boundary layer in simulations without whitecapping by about 10%–50%, depending on the forcing and initial conditions.
    Description: We thank Skidmore College for financial and infrastructure support, and Skidmore and the National Science Foundation for funding travel to meetings where early versions of this work were presented. We also thank the National Science Foundation, Oregon State University, Jonathan Nash, and Joe Jurisa for funding and hosting a workshop on River Plume Mixing in October, 2013, where ideas and context for this paper were developed.
    Description: 2016-02-01
    Keywords: Circulation/ Dynamics ; Mixing ; Turbulence ; Wave breaking ; Wind stress ; Atm/Ocean Structure/ Phenomena ; Mixed layer
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  • 19
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2015. 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 Physical Oceanography 45 (2015): 2621–2639, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-14-0239.1.
    Description: Measurements made as part of a large-scale experiment to examine wind-driven circulation and mixing in Chesapeake Bay demonstrate that circulations consistent with Langmuir circulation play an important role in surface boundary layer dynamics. Under conditions when the turbulent Langmuir number Lat is low (〈0.5), the surface mixed layer is characterized by 1) elevated vertical turbulent kinetic energy; 2) decreased anisotropy; 3) negative vertical velocity skewness indicative of strong/narrow downwelling and weak/broad upwelling; and 4) strong negative correlations between low-frequency vertical velocity and the velocity in the direction of wave propagation. These characteristics appear to be primarily the result of the vortex force associated with the surface wave field, but convection driven by a destabilizing heat flux is observed and appears to contribute significantly to the observed negative vertical velocity skewness. Conditions that favor convection usually also have strong Langmuir forcing, and these two processes probably both contribute to the surface mixed layer turbulence. Conditions in which traditional stress-driven turbulence is important are limited in this dataset. Unlike other shallow coastal systems where full water column Langmuir circulation has been observed, the salinity stratification in Chesapeake Bay is nearly always strong enough to prevent full-depth circulation from developing.
    Description: The funding for this research was provided by the National Science Foundation Grants OCE-1339032 and OCE-1338518.
    Description: 2016-04-01
    Keywords: Circulation/ Dynamics ; Convection ; Instability ; Mixing ; Turbulence ; Wave breaking ; Wind stress
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  • 20
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    American Meteorological Society
    Publication Date: 2017-01-05
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2013. 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 Physical Oceanography 43 (2013): 1398–1406, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-13-028.1.
    Description: An adiabatic, inertial, and quasigeostrophic model is used to discuss the interaction of surface Ekman transport with an island. The theory extends the recent work of Spall and Pedlosky to include an analytical and nonlinear model for the interaction. The presence of an island that interrupts a uniform Ekman layer transport raises interesting questions about the resulting circulation. The consequential upwelling around the island can lead to a local intake of fluid from the geostrophic region beneath the Ekman layer or to a more complex flow around the island in which the fluid entering the Ekman layer on one portion of the island's perimeter is replaced by a flow along the island's boundary from a downwelling region located elsewhere on the island. This becomes especially pertinent when the flow is quasigeostrophic and adiabatic. The oncoming geostrophic flow that balances the offshore Ekman flux is largely diverted around the island, and the Ekman flux is fed by a transfer of fluid from the western to the eastern side of the island. As opposed to the linear, dissipative model described earlier, this transfer takes place even in the absence of a topographic skirt around the island. The principal effect of topography in the inertial model is to introduce an asymmetry between the circulation on the northern and southern sides of the island. The quasigeostrophic model allows a simple solution to the model problem with topography and yet the resulting three-dimensional circulation is surprisingly complex with streamlines connecting each side of the island.
    Description: This research was supported in part by NSF Grant OCE Grant 0925061.
    Keywords: Baroclinic flows ; Large-scale motions ; Nonlinear dynamics ; Ocean circulation ; Ocean dynamics ; Topographic effects
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  • 21
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2014. 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 Physical Oceanography 44 (2014): 319–342, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-13-095.1.
    Description: The California Undercurrent (CUC), a poleward-flowing feature over the continental slope, is a key transport pathway along the west coast of North America and an important component of regional upwelling dynamics. This study examines the poleward undercurrent and alongshore pressure gradients in the northern California Current System (CCS), where local wind stress forcing is relatively weak. The dynamics of the undercurrent are compared in the primitive equation Navy Coastal Ocean Model and a linear coastal trapped wave model. Both models are validated using hydrographic data and current-meter observations in the core of the undercurrent in the northern CCS. In the linear model, variability in the predominantly equatorward wind stress along the U.S. West Coast produces episodic reversals to poleward flow over the northern CCS slope during summer. However, reproducing the persistence of the undercurrent during late summer requires additional incoming energy from sea level variability applied south of the region of the strongest wind forcing. The relative importance of the barotropic and baroclinic components of the modeled alongshore pressure gradient changes with latitude. In contrast to the southern and central portions of the CCS, the baroclinic component of the alongshore pressure gradient provides the primary poleward force at CUC depths over the northern CCS slope. At time scales from weeks to months, the alongshore pressure gradient force is primarily balanced by the Coriolis force associated with onshore flow.
    Description: This work was supported by grants to B. Hickey from the Coastal Ocean Program of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) (NA17OP2789 and NA09NOS4780180) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) (OCE0234587 and OCE0942675) as part of the Ecology of Harmful Algal Blooms Pacific Northwest (ECOHAB PNW) and Pacific Northwest Toxin (PNWTOX) projects. I. Shulman was supported by the Naval Research Laboratory.
    Description: 2014-07-01
    Keywords: Geographic location/entity ; Continental shelf/slope ; Circulation/ Dynamics ; Baroclinic flows ; Coastal flows ; Models and modeling ; Model evaluation/performance ; Variability ; Intraseasonal variability ; Seasonal variability
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  • 22
    Publication Date: 2017-01-05
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2014. 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 Physical Oceanography 44 (2014): 834-849, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-13-0179.1.
    Description: A hydrostatic numerical model with alongshore-uniform barotropic M2 tidal boundary forcing and idealized shelfbreak canyon bathymetries is used to study internal-tide generation and onshore propagation. A control simulation with Mid-Atlantic Bight representative bathymetry is supported by other simulations that serve to identify specific processes. The canyons and adjacent slopes are transcritical in steepness with respect to M2 internal wave characteristics. Although the various canyons are symmetrical in structure, barotropic-to-baroclinic energy conversion rates Cυ are typically asymmetrical within them. The resulting onshore-propagating internal waves are the strongest along beams in the horizontal plane, with the stronger beam in the control simulation lying on the side with higher Cυ. Analysis of the simulation results suggests that the cross-canyon asymmetrical Cυ distributions are caused by multiple-scattering effects on one canyon side slope, because the phase variation in the spatially distributed internal-tide sources, governed by variations in the orientation of the bathymetry gradient vector, allows resonant internal-tide generation. A less complex, semianalytical, modal internal wave propagation model with sources placed along the critical-slope locus (where the M2 internal wave characteristic is tangent to the seabed) and variable source phasing is used to diagnose the physics of the horizontal beams of onshore internal wave radiation. Model analysis explains how the cross-canyon phase and amplitude variations in the locally generated internal tides affect parameters of the internal-tide beams. Under the assumption that strong internal tides on continental shelves evolve to include nonlinear wave trains, the asymmetrical internal-tide generation and beam radiation effects may lead to nonlinear internal waves and enhanced mixing occurring preferentially on one side of shelfbreak canyons, in the absence of other influencing factors.
    Description: All three authors were supported by Office of Naval Research (ONR) Grant N00014-11-1-0701. WGZ was additionally supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) Grant OCE-1154575, and TFD was additionally supported by NSF Grant OCE-1060430.
    Description: 2014-09-01
    Keywords: Circulation/ Dynamics ; Baroclinic flows ; Internal waves ; Ocean circulation ; Topographic effects ; Waves, oceanic ; Models and modeling ; Numerical analysis/modeling
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  • 23
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2012. 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 Physical Oceanography 42 (2012): 2234–2253, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-12-033.1.
    Description: Meridional velocity, mass, and heat transport in the equatorial oceans are difficult to estimate because of the nonapplicability of the geostrophic balance. For this purpose a steady-state model is utilized in the equatorial Indian Ocean using NCEP wind stress and temperature and salinity data from the World Ocean Atlas 2005 (WOA05) and Argo. The results show a Somali Current flowing to the south during the winter monsoon carrying −11.5 ± 1.3 Sv (1 Sv ≡ 106 m3 s−1) and −12.3 ± 0.3 Sv from WOA05 and Argo, respectively. In the summer monsoon the Somali Current reverses to the north transporting 16.8 ± 1.2 Sv and 19.8 ± 0.6 Sv in the WOA05 and Argo results. Transitional periods are considered together and in consequence, there is not a clear Somali Current present in this period. Model results fit with in situ measurements made around the region, although Argo data results are quite more realistic than WOA05 data results.
    Description: This study has been partly funded by the MOC Project (CTM 2008- 06438) and the Spanish contribution to the Argo network (AC2009 ACI2009-0998), financed by the Spanish Government and Feder.
    Description: 2013-06-01
    Keywords: Indian Ocean ; Subtropics ; Currents ; Ocean circulation ; Transport ; Wind stress
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  • 24
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2013. 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 Physical Oceanography 43 (2013): 1589–1610, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-12-0173.1.
    Description: This study investigates the exchange of momentum between the atmosphere and ocean using data collected from four oceanic field experiments. Direct covariance estimates of momentum fluxes were collected in all four experiments and wind profiles were collected during three of them. The objective of the investigation is to improve parameterizations of the surface roughness and drag coefficient used to estimate the surface stress from bulk formulas. Specifically, the Coupled Ocean–Atmosphere Response Experiment (COARE) 3.0 bulk flux algorithm is refined to create COARE 3.5. Oversea measurements of dimensionless shear are used to investigate the stability function under stable and convective conditions. The behavior of surface roughness is then investigated over a wider range of wind speeds (up to 25 m s−1) and wave conditions than have been available from previous oversea field studies. The wind speed dependence of the Charnock coefficient α in the COARE algorithm is modified to , where m = 0.017 m−1 s and b = −0.005. When combined with a parameterization for smooth flow, this formulation gives better agreement with the stress estimates from all of the field programs at all winds speeds with significant improvement for wind speeds over 13 m s−1. Wave age– and wave slope–dependent parameterizations of the surface roughness are also investigated, but the COARE 3.5 wind speed–dependent formulation matches the observations well without any wave information. The available data provide a simple reason for why wind speed–, wave age–, and wave slope–dependent formulations give similar results—the inverse wave age varies nearly linearly with wind speed in long-fetch conditions for wind speeds up to 25 m s−1.
    Description: This work was funded by the National Science Foundation Grant OCE04-24536 as part of the CLIVAR Mode Water Dynamics Experiment (CLIMODE) and the Office of Naval Research Grant N00014-05-1-0139 as part of the CBLAST-LOW program.
    Description: 2014-02-01
    Keywords: Wind shear ; Wind stress ; Atmosphere-ocean interaction ; Fluxes ; Momentum ; Algorithms
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  • 25
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2011. 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 Physical Oceanography 41 (2011): 2168–2186, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-11-08.1.
    Description: This paper studies the interaction of an Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC)–like wind-driven channel flow with a continental slope and a flat-bottomed bay-shaped shelf near the channel’s southern boundary. Interaction between the model ACC and the topography in the second layer induces local changes of the potential vorticity (PV) flux, which further causes the formation of a first-layer PV front near the base of the topography. Located between the ACC and the first-layer slope, the newly formed PV front is constantly perturbed by the ACC and in turn forces the first-layer slope with its own variability in an intermittent but persistent way. The volume transport of the slope water across the first-layer slope edge is mostly directly driven by eddies and meanders of the new front, and its magnitude is similar to the maximum Ekman transport in the channel. Near the bay’s opening, the effect of the topographic waves, excited by offshore variability, dominates the cross-isobath exchange and induces a mean clockwise shelf circulation. The waves’ propagation is only toward the west and tends to be blocked by the bay’s western boundary in the narrow-shelf region. The ensuing wave–coast interaction amplifies the wave amplitude and the cross-shelf transport. Because the interaction only occurs near the western boundary, the shelf water in the west of the bay is more readily carried offshore than that in the east and the mean shelf circulation is also intensified along the bay’s western boundary.
    Description: Y. Zhang acknowledges the support of the MIT-WHOI Joint Program in Physical Oceanography and NSF OCE-9901654 and OCE- 0451086. J. Pedlosky acknowledges the support of NSF OCE-9901654 and OCE-0451086.
    Keywords: Baroclinic flows ; Eddies ; Fronts ; Mass fluxes/transport ; Mesoscale processes ; Topographic effects
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  • 26
    Publication Date: 2017-01-05
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2012. 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 Physical Oceanography 42 (2012): 1083–1098, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-11-015.1.
    Description: Here, the response of a coastally trapped buoyant plume to downwelling-favorable wind forcing is explored using a simplified two-dimensional numerical model and a prognostic theory for the resulting width, depth, and density anomaly and along-shelf transport of the plume. Consistent with the numerical simulations, the analytical model shows that the wind causes mixing of the plume water and that the forced cross-shelf circulation can also generate significant deepening and surface narrowing, as well as increased along-shelf transport. The response is due to a combination of the purely advective process that leads to the steepening of the isopycnals and the entrainment of ambient water into the plume. The advective component depends on the initial plume geometry: plumes that have a large fraction of their total width in contact with the bottom (“bottom trapped”) suffer relatively small depth and width changes compared to plumes that have a large fraction of their total width detached from the bottom (“surface trapped”). Key theoretical parameters are Wγ/Wα, the ratio of the width of the plume detached from the bottom to the width of the plume in contact with it, and the ratio of the wind-generated mixed layer δe to the initial plume depth hp, which determines the amount of water initially entrained into the plume. The model results also show that the cross-shelf circulation can be strongly influenced by the wind-driven response in combination with the geostrophic shear of the plume. The continuous entrainment into the plume, as well as transient events, is also discussed.
    Description: This work has been supported by FONDECYT Grant 1070501. S. Lentz received support by theNational Science Foundation GrantOCE-0751554. C. Moffat had additional support from the National Science Foundation Office of Polar Programs through U.S. Southern Ocean GLOBEC Grants OPP 99-10092 and 06- 23223.
    Description: 2013-01-01
    Keywords: Baroclinic flows ; Boundary currents ; Coastal flows ; Upwelling/downwelling ; Wind ; Ocean models
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  • 27
    Publication Date: 2017-01-05
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2010. 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 Climate 23 (2010): 6221–6233, doi:10.1175/2010JCLI3402.1.
    Description: Enhanced decadal variability in sea surface temperature (SST) centered on the Kuroshio Extension (KE) has been found in the Community Climate System Model version 3 (CCSM3) as well as in other coupled climate models. This decadal peak has higher energy than is found in nature, almost twice as large in some cases. While previous analyses have concentrated on the mechanisms for such decadal variability in coupled models, an analysis of the causes of excessive SST response to changes in wind stress has been missing. Here, a detailed comparison of the relationships between interannual changes in SST and sea surface height (SSH) as a proxy for geostrophic surface currents in the region in both CCSM3 and observations, and how these relationships depend on the mean ocean circulation, temperature, and salinity, is made. We use observationally based climatological temperature and salinity fields as well as satellite-based SSH and SST fields for comparison. The primary cause for the excessive SST variability is the coincidence of the mean KE with the region of largest SST gradients in the model. In observations, these two regions are separated by almost 500 km. In addition, the too shallow surface oceanic mixed layer in March north of the KE in the subarctic Pacific contributes to the biases. These biases are not unique to CCSM3 and suggest that mean biases in current, temperature, and salinity structures in separated western boundary current regions can exert a large influence on the size of modeled decadal SST variability.
    Description: Support for L.T. was provided by the NASA sponsored Ocean Surface Topography Science Team, under Contract 1267196 with the University of Washington, administered by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Support for Y.-O. K. comes from the NOAA Office of Global Programs (grant to C. Deser and Y.-O. Kwon) and the WHOI Heyman fellowship.
    Keywords: Bias ; Coupled models ; Decadal variability ; Ocean models ; Sea surface temperature ; Wind stress
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  • 28
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2009. 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 Climate 22 (2009): 4066–4082, doi:10.1175/2009JCLI2629.1.
    Description: Small-scale variation in wind stress due to ocean–atmosphere interaction within the atmospheric boundary layer alters the temporal and spatial scale of Ekman pumping driving the double-gyre circulation of the ocean. A high-resolution quasigeostrophic (QG) ocean model, coupled to a dynamic atmospheric mixed layer, is used to demonstrate that, despite the small spatial scale of the Ekman-pumping anomalies, this phenomenon significantly modifies the large-scale ocean circulation. The primary effect is to decrease the strength of the nonlinear component of the gyre circulation by approximately 30%–40%. This result is due to the highest transient Ekman-pumping anomalies destabilizing the flow in a dynamically sensitive region close to the western boundary current separation. The instability of the jet produces a flux of potential vorticity between the two gyres that acts to weaken both gyres.
    Description: AH and WD were supported by an ARC Linkage International Grant (LX0668781). WD was also supported by NSF Grants OCE 0424227 and OCE 0550139. Funding for PB was provided by NSF Grants OCE 0344094 and OCE 0725796 and by the research grant from the Newton Trust of the University of Cambridge. SK was supported by U.S. DOE Grant DE-FG02–02ER63413 and NASA Grant NNG-06- AG66G-1.
    Keywords: Airndashsea interaction ; Coupled models ; Mesoscale processes ; Wind stress ; Ekman pumping/transport
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  • 29
    Publication Date: 2017-01-05
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2010. 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 Physical Oceanography 40 (2010): 1075-1086, doi:10.1175/2009JPO4375.1.
    Description: A quasigeostrophic, two-layer model is used to study the baroclinic circulation around a thin, meridionally elongated island. The flow is driven by either buoyancy forcing or wind stress, each of whose structure would produce an antisymmetric double-gyre flow. The ocean bottom is flat. When the island partially straddles the intergyre boundary, fluid from one gyre is forced to flow into the other. The amount of the intergyre flow depends on the island constant, that is, the value of the geostrophic streamfunction on the island in each layer. That constant is calculated in a manner similar to earlier studies and is determined by the average, along the meridional length of the island, of the interior Sverdrup solution just to the east of the island. Explicit solutions are given for both buoyancy and wind-driven flows. The presence of an island of nonzero width requires the determination of the baroclinic streamfunction on the basin’s eastern boundary. The value of the boundary term is proportional to the island’s area. This adds a generally small additional baroclinic intergyre flow. In all cases, the intergyre flow produced by the island is not related to topographic steering of the flow but rather the pressure anomaly on the island as manifested by the barotropic and baroclinic island constants. The vertical structure of the flow around the island is a function of the parameterization of the vertical mixing in the problem and, in particular, the degree to which long baroclinic Rossby waves can traverse the basin before becoming thermally damped.
    Description: This research was supported in part by NSF Grant OCE 0451086.
    Keywords: Gyres ; Baroclinic flows ; Topographic effects ; Streamfunction ; Orographic effects
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  • 30
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2008. 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 Physical Oceanography 38 (2008): 909–917, doi:10.1175/2007JPO3535.1.
    Description: The classical two-box model of Stommel is extended in two directions: replacing the buoyancy constraint with an energy constraint and including the wind-driven gyre. Stommel postulated a buoyancy constraint for the thermohaline circulation, and his basic idea has evolved into the dominating theory of thermohaline circulation; however, recently, it is argued that the thermohaline circulation is maintained by mechanical energy from wind stress and tides. The major difference between these two types of models is the bifurcation structure: the Stommel-like model has two thermal modes (one stable and another one unstable) and one stable haline mode, whereas the energy-constraint model has one stable thermal mode and two saline modes (one stable and another one unstable). Adding the wind-driven gyre changes the threshold value of thermohaline bifurcation greatly; thus, the inclusion of the wind-driven gyre is a vital step in completely modeling the physical processes related to thermohaline circulation.
    Description: YPG was supported by the National Science Foundation of China (NSFC, 40676022), the National Basic Research Program of China (2006CB403605), and the Guangdong Natural Science Foundation (5003672). RXH was supported by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration through CICOR Cooperative Agreement NA17RJ1223 to the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.
    Keywords: Thermohaline circulation ; Mixing ; Wind stress ; Buoyancy ; Energy budget
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  • 31
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2008. 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 Physical Oceanography 38 (2008): 1253-1266, doi:10.1175/2007JPO3786.1.
    Description: Wind stress and tidal dissipation are the most important sources of mechanical energy for maintaining the oceanic general circulation. The contribution of mechanical energy due to tropical cyclones can be a vitally important factor in regulating the oceanic general circulation and its variability. However, previous estimates of wind stress energy input were based on low-resolution wind stress data in which strong nonlinear events, such as tropical cyclones, were smoothed out. Using a hurricane–ocean coupled model constructed from an axisymmetric hurricane model and a three-layer ocean model, the rate of energy input to the world’s oceans induced by tropical cyclones over the period from 1984 to 2003 was estimated. The energy input is estimated as follows: 1.62 TW to the surface waves and 0.10 TW to the surface currents (including 0.03 TW to the near-inertial motions). The rate of gravitational potential energy increase due to tropical cyclones is 0.05 TW. Both the energy input from tropical cyclones and the increase of gravitational potential energy of the ocean show strong interannual and decadal variability with an increasing rate of 16% over the past 20 years. The annual mean diapycnal upwelling induced by tropical cyclones over the past 20 years is estimated as 39 Sv (Sv ≡ 106 m3 s−1). Owing to tropical cyclones, diapycnal mixing in the upper ocean (below the mixed layer) is greatly enhanced. Within the regimes of strong activity of tropical cyclones, the increase of diapycnal diffusivity is on the order of (1 − 6) × 10−4 m2 s−1. The tropical cyclone–related energy input and diapycnal mixing may play an important role in climate variability, ecology, fishery, and environments.
    Description: LLL and WW were supported by the National Basic Research Priorities Programmer of China through Grant 2007CB816004 and National Outstanding Youth Natural Science Foundation of China FIG. 15. Annual-mean vertical diffusivity induced by tropical cyclones from 1984 to 2003 (units: 10 4 m2 s 1): (right) the horizontal distribution and (left) the zonally averaged vertical diffusivity. JUNE 2008 L IU ET AL . 1265 under Grant 40725017. RXH was supported by the W. Alan Clark Chair from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.
    Keywords: Tropical cyclones ; Ocean circulation ; Wind stress ; Mixing ; Interannual variability
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  • 32
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2008. 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 Physical Oceanography 38 (2008): 1486–1500, doi:10.1175/2007JPO3767.1.
    Description: Fits of an annual harmonic to depth-average along-shelf current time series longer than 200 days from 27 sites over the Middle Atlantic Bight (MAB) continental shelf have amplitudes of a few centimeters per second. These seasonal variations are forced by seasonal variations in the wind stress and the cross-shelf density gradient. The component of wind stress that drives the along-shelf flow over most of the MAB mid- and outer shelf is oriented northeast–southwest, perpendicular to the major axis of the seasonal variation in the wind stress. Consequently, there is not a significant seasonal variation in the wind-driven along-shelf flow, except over the southern MAB shelf and the inner shelf of New England where the wind stress components forcing the along-shelf flow are north–south and east–west, respectively. The seasonal variation in the residual along-shelf flow, after removing the wind-driven component, has an amplitude of a few centimeters per second with maximum southwestward flow in spring onshore of the 60-m isobath and autumn offshore of the 60-m isobath. The spring maximum onshore of the 60-m isobath is consistent with the maximum river discharges in spring enhancing cross-shelf salinity gradients. The autumn maximum offshore of the 60-m isobath and a steady phase increase with water depth offshore of Cape Cod are both consistent with the seasonal variation in the cross-shelf temperature gradient associated with the development and destruction of a near-bottom pool of cold water over the mid and outer shelf (“cold pool”) due to seasonal variations in surface heat flux and wind stress.
    Description: This research was funded by the Ocean Sciences Division of the National Science Foundation under Grants OCE-820773, OCE-841292, and OCE- 848961.
    Keywords: Seasonal variability ; Ocean circulation ; Continental shelf ; Wind stress ; Density currents
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  • 33
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2008. 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 Physical Oceanography 38 (2008): 2164–2184, doi:10.1175/2008JPO3962.1.
    Description: This is the second part of a two-part investigation of a coupled wind and wave model that includes the enhanced form drag of breaking waves. The model is based on the wave energy balance and the conservation of air-side momentum and energy. In Part I, coupled nonlinear advance–delay differential equations were derived, which govern the wave height spectrum, the distribution of breaking waves, and vertical air side profiles of the turbulent stress and wind speed. Numeric solutions were determined for mature seas. Here, numeric solutions for a wide range of wind and wave conditions are obtained, including young, strongly forced wind waves. Furthermore, the “spatial sheltering effect” is introduced so that smaller waves in airflow separation regions of breaking longer waves cannot be forced by the wind. The solutions strongly depend on the wave height curvature spectrum at high wavenumbers (the “threshold saturation level”). As the threshold saturation level is reduced, the effect of breaking waves becomes stronger. For young strongly forced waves (laboratory conditions), breaking waves close to the spectral peak dominate the wind input and previous solutions of a model with only input to breaking waves are recovered. Model results of the normalized roughness length are generally consistent with previous laboratory and field measurements. For field conditions, the wind stress depends sensitively on the wave height spectrum. The spatial sheltering may modify the number of breaking shorter waves, in particular, for younger seas.
    Description: This work was supported by the U.S. National Science Foundation (Grant OCE- 0526177) and the U.S. Office of Naval Research (Grant N00014–06–10729).
    Keywords: Wave breaking ; Coupled models ; Wind stress ; Momentum ; Sea state
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  • 34
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2007. 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 Climate 20 (2007): 3785–3801, doi:10.1175/JCLI4234.1
    Description: The influences of strong gradients in sea surface temperature on near-surface cross-front winds are explored in a series of idealized numerical modeling experiments. The atmospheric model is the Naval Research Laboratory Coupled Ocean–Atmosphere Mesoscale Prediction System (COAMPS) model, which is fully coupled to the Regional Ocean Modeling System (ROMS) ocean model. A series of idealized, two-dimensional model calculations is carried out in which the wind blows from the warm-to-cold side or the cold-to-warm side of an initially prescribed ocean front. The evolution of the near-surface winds, boundary layer, and thermal structure is described, and the balances in the momentum equation are diagnosed. The changes in surface winds across the front are consistent with previous models and observations, showing a strong positive correlation with the sea surface temperature and boundary layer thickness. The coupling arises mainly as a result of changes in the flux Richardson number across the front, and the strength of the coupling coefficient grows quadratically with the strength of the cross-front geostrophic wind. The acceleration of the winds over warm water results primarily from the rapid change in turbulent mixing and the resulting unbalanced Coriolis force in the vicinity of the front. Much of the loss/gain of momentum perpendicular to the front in the upper and lower boundary layer results from acceleration/deceleration of the flow parallel to the front via the Coriolis term. This mechanism is different from the previously suggested processes of downward mixing of momentum and adjustment to the horizontal pressure gradient, and is active for flows off the equator with sufficiently strong winds. Although the main focus of this work is on the midlatitude, strong wind regime, calculations at low latitudes and with weak winds show that the pressure gradient and turbulent mixing terms dominate the cross-front momentum budget, consistent with previous work.
    Description: This work was supported by the Office of Naval Research Grant N00014-05-1-0300.
    Keywords: Fronts ; Sea surface temperature ; Wind stress ; Coupled models ; Boundary layer
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  • 35
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2007. 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 Physical Oceanography 37 (2007): 1177-1191, doi:10.1175/jpo3054.1.
    Description: The stability of baroclinic Rossby waves in large ocean basins is examined, and the quasigeostrophic (QG) results of LaCasce and Pedlosky are generalized. First, stability equations are derived for perturbations on large-scale waves, using the two-layer shallow-water system. These equations resemble the QG stability equations, except that they retain the variation of the internal deformation radius with latitude. The equations are solved numerically for different initial conditions through eigenmode calculations and time stepping. The fastest-growing eigenmodes are intensified at high latitudes, and the slower-growing modes are intensified at lower latitudes. All of the modes have meridional scales and growth times that are comparable to the deformation radius in the latitude range where the eigenmode is intensified. This is what one would expect if one had applied QG theory in latitude bands. The evolution of large-scale waves was then simulated using the Regional Ocean Modeling System primitive equation model. The results are consistent with the theoretical predictions, with deformation-scale perturbations growing at rates inversely proportional to the local deformation radius. The waves succumb to the perturbations at the mid- to high latitudes, but are able to cross the basin at low latitudes before doing so. Also, the barotropic waves produced by the instability propagate faster than the baroclinic long-wave speed, which may explain the discrepancy in speeds noted by Chelton and Schlax.
    Description: PEI was supported by a postdoctoral grant from the Norwegian Research Council, JHL was supported under the Norwegian NOCLIM II program, and JP was partly supported by NSF OCE 0451086.
    Keywords: Rossby waves ; Ocean models ; Barotropic flows ; Baroclinic flows
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  • 36
    Publication Date: 2017-01-05
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2009. 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 Physical Oceanography 39 (2009): 107-124, doi:10.1175/2008JPO3952.1.
    Description: In most estuarine systems it is assumed that the dominant along-channel momentum balance is between the integrated pressure gradient and bed stress. Scaling the amplitude of the estuarine circulation based on this balance has been shown to have predictive skill. However, a number of authors recently highlighted important nonlinear processes that contribute to the subtidal dynamics at leading order. In this study, a previously validated numerical model of the Hudson River estuary is used to examine the forces driving the residual estuarine circulation and to test the predictive skill of two linear scaling relationships. Results demonstrate that the nonlinear advective acceleration terms contribute to the subtidal along-channel momentum balance at leading order. The contribution of these nonlinear terms is driven largely by secondary lateral flows. Under a range of forcing conditions in the model runs, the advective acceleration terms nearly always act in concert with the baroclinic pressure gradient, reinforcing the residual circulation. Despite the strong contribution of the nonlinear advective terms to the subtidal dynamical balance, a linear scaling accurately predicts the strength of the observed residual circulation in the model. However, this result is largely fortuitous, as this scaling does not account for two processes that are fundamental to the estuarine circulation. The skill of this scaling results because of the compensatory relationship between the contribution of the advective acceleration terms and the suppression of turbulence due to density stratification. Both of these processes, neither of which is accounted for in the linear scaling, increase the residual estuarine circulation but have an opposite dependence on tidal amplitude and, consequently, strength of stratification.
    Description: This research was supported by the Beacon Institute for Rivers and Estuaries—Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution postdoctoral fellowship program, as well as NSF Grants OCE-0452054 and OCE-0451740.
    Keywords: Advection ; Estuarine circulation ; Friction ; Density currents ; Baroclinic flows
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  • 37
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2009. 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 Physical Oceanography 39 (2009): 387-403, doi:10.1175/2008JPO3934.1.
    Description: Marginal sea overflows and the overlying upper ocean are coupled in the vertical by two distinct mechanisms—by an interfacial mass flux from the upper ocean to the overflow layer that accompanies entrainment and by a divergent eddy flux associated with baroclinic instability. Because both mechanisms tend to be localized in space, the resulting upper ocean circulation can be characterized as a β plume for which the relevant background potential vorticity is set by the slope of the topography, that is, a topographic β plume. The entrainment-driven topographic β plume consists of a single gyre that is aligned along isobaths. The circulation is cyclonic within the upper ocean (water columns are stretched). The transport within one branch of the topographic β plume may exceed the entrainment flux by a factor of 2 or more. Overflows are likely to be baroclinically unstable, especially near the strait. This creates eddy variability in both the upper ocean and overflow layers and a flux of momentum and energy in the vertical. In the time mean, the eddies accompanying baroclinic instability set up a double-gyre circulation in the upper ocean, an eddy-driven topographic β plume. In regions where baroclinic instability is growing, the momentum flux from the overflow into the upper ocean acts as a drag on the overflow and causes the overflow to descend the slope at a steeper angle than what would arise from bottom friction alone. Numerical model experiments suggest that the Faroe Bank Channel overflow should be the most prominent example of an eddy-driven topographic β plume and that the resulting upper-layer transport should be comparable to that of the overflow. The overflow-layer eddies that accompany baroclinic instability are analogous to those observed in moored array data. In contrast, the upper layer of the Mediterranean overflow is likely to be dominated more by an entrainment-driven topographic β plume. The difference arises because entrainment occurs at a much shallower location for the Mediterranean case and the background potential vorticity gradient of the upper ocean is much larger.
    Description: SK’s support during the time of his Ph.D. research in the MIT/WHOI Joint Program was provided by the National Science Foundation through Grant OCE04-24741. JP and JY have also received support from the Climate Process Team on Gravity Current Entrainment, NSF Grant OCE-0611530. JY has also been supported by NSF Grant OCE-0351055.
    Keywords: Baroclinic flows ; Mass fluxes/transport ; Entrainment ; Topographic effects ; Potential vorticity
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  • 38
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2008. 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 Physical Oceanography 38 (2008): 753-770, doi:10.1175/2007JPO3808.1.
    Description: A tidally and cross-sectionally averaged model based on the temporal evolution of the quasi-steady Hansen and Rattray equations is applied to simulate the salinity distribution and vertical exchange flow along the Hudson River estuary. The model achieves high skill at hindcasting salinity and residual velocity variation during a 110-day period in 2004 covering a wide range of river discharges and tidal forcing. The approach is based on an existing model framework that has been modified to improve model skill relative to observations. The external forcing has been modified to capture meteorological time-scale variability in salinity, stratification, and residual velocity due to sea level fluctuations at the open boundary and along-estuary wind stress. To reflect changes in vertical mixing due to stratification, the vertical mixing coefficients have been modified to use the bottom boundary layer height rather than the water depth as an effective mixing length scale. The boundary layer parameterization depends on the tidal amplitude and the local baroclinic pressure gradient through the longitudinal Richardson number, and improves the model response to spring–neap variability in tidal amplitude during periods of high river discharge. Finally, steady-state model solutions are evaluated for both the Hudson River and northern San Francisco Bay over a range of forcing conditions. Agreement between the model and scaling of equilibrium salinity intrusions lends confidence that the approach is transferable to other estuaries, despite significant differences in bathymetry. Discrepancies between the model results and observations at high river discharge are indicative of limits at which the formulation begins to fail, and where an alternative approach that captures two-layer dynamics would be more appropriate.
    Description: This research was supported by the Hudson River Foundation Grant 005/03A, NSF Grant OCE-0452054, and by the Postdoctoral Scholar Program at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, with funding provided by the J. Seward Johnson Fund.
    Keywords: Estuaries ; Salinity ; Rivers ; Tides ; Wind stress
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  • 39
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    American Meteorological Society
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2008. 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 Physical Oceanography 38 (2008): 1267-1277, doi:10.1175/2007JPO3906.1.
    Description: A two-layer quasigeostrophic model in a channel is used to study the influence of lateral displacements of regions of different sign mean potential vorticity gradient (Πy) on the growth rate and structure of linearly unstable waves. The mean state is very idealized, with a region of positive Πy in the upper layer and a region of negative Πy in the lower layer; elsewhere Πy is zero. The growth rate and structure of the model’s unstable waves are quite sensitive to the amount of overlap between the two regions. For large amounts of overlap (more than several internal deformation radii), the channel modes described by Phillips’ model are recovered. The growth rate decreases abruptly as the amount of overlap decreases below the internal deformation radius. However, unstable modes are also found for cases in which the two nonzero Πy regions are separated far apart. In these cases, the wavenumber of the unstable waves decreases such that the aspect ratio of the wave remains O(1). The waves are characterized by a large-scale barotropic component that has maximum amplitude near one boundary but extends all the way across the channel to the opposite boundary. Near the boundaries, the wave is of mixed barotropic–baroclinic structure with cross-front scales on the order of the internal deformation radius. The perturbation heat flux is concentrated near the nonzero Πy regions, but the perturbation momentum flux extends all the way across the channel. The perturbation fluxes act to reduce the isopycnal slopes near the channel boundaries and to transmit zonal momentum from the region of Πy 〉 0 to the region on the opposite side of the channel where Πy 〈 0. These nonzero perturbation momentum fluxes are found even for a mean state that has no lateral shear in the velocity field.
    Description: This work was supported by NSF Grants OPP-0421904, OCE-0423975 (MAS), and OCE- 85108600 (JP).
    Keywords: Baroclinic flows ; Barotropic flows
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  • 40
    Publication Date: 2017-01-05
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2010. 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 Physical Oceanography 40 (2010): 1851-1865, doi:10.1175/2010JPO4217.1.
    Description: Motivated by the fact that time-dependent currents are ubiquitous in the ocean, this work studies the two-layer Phillips model on the beta plane with baroclinic shear flows that are steady, periodic, or aperiodic in time to understand their nonlinear evolution better. When a linearly unstable basic state is slightly perturbed, the primary wave grows exponentially until nonlinear advection adjusts the growth. Even though for long time scales these nearly two-dimensional motions predominantly cascade energy to large scales, for relatively short times the wave–mean flow and wave–wave interactions cascade energy to smaller horizontal length scales. The authors demonstrate that the manner through which these mechanisms excite the harmonics depends significantly on the characteristics of the basic state. Time-dependent basic states can excite harmonics very rapidly in comparison to steady basic states. Moreover, in all the simulations of aperiodic baroclinic shear flows, the barotropic component of the primary wave continues to grow after the adjustment by the nonlinearities. Furthermore, the authors find that the correction to the zonal mean flow can be much larger when the basic state is aperiodic compared to the periodic or steady limits. Finally, even though time-dependent baroclinic shear on an f plane is linearly stable, the authors show that perturbations can grow algebraically in the linear regime because of the erratic variations in the aperiodic flow. Subsequently, baroclinicity adjusts the growing wave and creates a final state that is more energetic than the nonlinear adjustment of any of the unstable steady baroclinic shears that are considered.
    Description: FJP was supported by NSERC and JP was supported by NSF OCE 0925061 during the research and writing of this manuscript.
    Keywords: Baroclinic flows ; Shear structure/flows
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  • 41
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2008. 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 Physical Oceanography 38 (2008): 380-399, doi:10.1175/2007JPO3728.1.
    Description: Barotropic to baroclinic conversion and attendant phenomena were recently examined at the Kaena Ridge as an aspect of the Hawaii Ocean Mixing Experiment. Two distinct mixing processes appear to be at work in the waters above the 1100-m-deep ridge crest. At middepths, above 400 m, mixing events resemble their open-ocean counterparts. There is no apparent modulation of mixing rates with the fortnightly cycle, and they are well modeled by standard open-ocean parameterizations. Nearer to the topography, there is quasi-deterministic breaking associated with each baroclinic crest passage. Large-amplitude, small-scale internal waves are triggered by tidal forcing, consistent with lee-wave formation at the ridge break. These waves have vertical wavelengths on the order of 400 m. During spring tides, the waves are nonlinear and exhibit convective instabilities on their leading edge. Dissipation rates exceed those predicted by the open-ocean parameterizations by up to a factor of 100, with the disparity increasing as the seafloor is approached. These observations are based on a set of repeated CTD and microconductivity profiles obtained from the research platform (R/P) Floating Instrument Platform (FLIP), which was trimoored over the southern edge of the ridge crest. Ocean velocity and shear were resolved to a 4-m vertical scale by a suspended Doppler sonar. Dissipation was estimated both by measuring overturn displacements and from microconductivity wavenumber spectra. The methods agreed in water deeper than 200 m, where sensor resolution limitations do not limit the turbulence estimates. At intense mixing sites new phenomena await discovery, and existing parameterizations cannot be expected to apply.
    Description: This work was funded by the National Science Foundation as a component of the Hawaii Ocean Mixing Program. Added support for FLIP was provided by the Office of Naval Research.
    Keywords: Pacific Ocean ; Topographic effects ; Internal waves ; Barotropic flows ; Baroclinic flows
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  • 42
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2007. 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 Physical Oceanography 37 (2007): 1092–1097, doi:10.1175/JPO3045.1.
    Description: The impact of the observed relationship between sea surface temperature and surface wind stress on baroclinic instability in the ocean is explored using linear theory and a nonlinear model. A simple parameterization of the influence of sea surface temperature on wind stress is used to derive a surface boundary condition for the vertical velocity at the base of the oceanic Ekman layer. This boundary condition is applied to the classic linear, quasigeostrophic stability problem for a uniformly sheared flow originally studied by Eady in the 1940s. The results demonstrate that for a wind directed from warm water toward cold water, the coupling acts to enhance the growth rate, and increase the wavelength, of the most unstable wave. Winds in the opposite sense reduce the growth rate and decrease the wavelength of the most unstable wave. For representative coupling strengths, the change in growth rate can be as large as ±O(50%). This effect is largest for shallow, strongly stratified, low-latitude flows.
    Description: This work was supported by the Office of Naval Research Grant N00014-05-1-0300.
    Keywords: Wind stress ; Instability ; Sea surface temperature ; Baroclinic flows ; Ocean dynamics
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  • 43
    Publication Date: 2017-01-07
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2007. 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 Climate 20 (2007): 2416-2433, doi:10.1175/JCLI4103.1.
    Description: North Pacific decadal oceanic and atmospheric variability is examined from a 650-yr control integration of the Community Climate System Model version 2. The dominant pattern of winter sea surface temperature (SST) variability is similar to the observed “Pacific decadal oscillation,” with maximum amplitude along the Kuroshio Extension. SST anomalies in this region exhibit significant spectral peaks at approximately 16 and 40 yr. Lateral geostrophic heat flux divergence, caused by a meridional shift of the Kuroshio Extension forced by basin-scale wind stress curl anomalies 3–5 yr earlier, is responsible for the decadal SST variability; local surface heat flux and Ekman heat flux divergence act as a damping and positive feedback, respectively. A simple linear Rossby wave model is invoked to explicitly demonstrate the link between the wind stress curl forcing and decadal variability in the Kuroshio Extension. The Rossby wave model not only successfully reproduces the two decadal spectral peaks, but also illustrates that only the low-frequency (〉10-yr period) portion of the approximately white noise wind stress curl forcing is relevant. This model also demonstrates that the weak and insignificant decadal spectral peaks in the wind stress curl forcing are necessary for producing the corresponding strong and significant oceanic peaks in the Kuroshio Extension. The wind stress curl response to decadal SST anomalies in the Kuroshio Extension is similar in structure but opposite in sign and somewhat weaker than the wind stress curl forcing pattern. These results suggest that the simulated North Pacific decadal variability owes its existence to two-way ocean–atmosphere coupling.
    Description: The first author gratefully acknowledges financial support from NOAA’s Office of Global Programs (grant to C. Deser) and the CCSM Project Office.
    Keywords: Decadal variability ; Fluxes ; Rossby waves ; Wind stress ; Coupled models
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  • 44
    Publication Date: 2017-01-05
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2007. 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 Climate 20 (2007): 3395-3410, doi:10.1175/JCLI4195.1
    Description: Using 40-yr ECMWF Re-Analysis (ERA-40) data and in situ observations, the positive trend of Southern Ocean surface wind stress during two recent decades is detected, and its close linkage with spring Antarctic ozone depletion is established. The spring Antarctic ozone depletion affects the Southern Hemisphere lower-stratospheric circulation in late spring/early summer. The positive feedback involves the strengthening and cooling of the polar vortex, the enhancement of meridional temperature gradients and the meridional and vertical potential vorticity gradients, the acceleration of the circumpolar westerlies, and the reduction of the upward wave flux. This feedback loop, together with the ozone-related photochemical interaction, leads to the upward tendency of lower-stratospheric zonal wind in austral summer. In addition, the stratosphere–troposphere coupling, facilitated by ozone-related dynamics and the Southern Annular Mode, cooperates to relay the zonal wind anomalies to the upper troposphere. The wave–mean flow interaction and the meridional circulation work together in the form of the Southern Annular Mode, which transfers anomalous wind signals downward to the surface, triggering a striking strengthening of surface wind stress over the Southern Ocean.
    Description: This study was supported by MOST of China (Grant 2006CB403604) and Chinese Academy of Sciences (Grant KZSW2-YW-214) (for YXY and DXW) and W. Alan Clark Chair from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (for RXH).
    Keywords: Wind stress ; Decadal variability ; Ozone ; Southern Ocean ; Stratospheric circulation
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