3.3 Turbulence, jets, and beta-plumes studied with laboratory altimetry

Monday, 15 June 2015: 2:00 PM
Meridian Ballroom (The Commons Hotel)
Yakov Afanasyev, Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John's, NF, Canada
Manuscript (470.0 kB)

Handout (3.9 MB)

We will consider eddies, zonal jets and Rossby waves on the polar beta-plane in a rotating tank. These flows are relevant to meso- and large-scale dynamics of the Earth's oceans and atmosphere. The flows are generated by a barotropic or baroclinic forcing either spatially localized or distributed over the domain. Convective forcing due to distributed heat sources or baroclinic instability due to a shear between layers of different density result in flows containing multiple eddies and alternating zonal jets. Rossby waves are present in these turbulent flows and are an essential element in generation of the jets. Radiation of the Rossby waves by eddies or the beta-plume mechanism will be discussed as a concept which unifies all these different flows.

Laboratory altimetry (Altimetric Imaging Velocimetry) is used to measure the slopes of the surface elevation and to obtain the velocity fields of the flow, not unlike a satellite altimetry used by oceanographers.

Supplementary URL: http://www.physics.mun.ca/~yakov/

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