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Eddy-Driven Recirculations from a Localized Transient Forcing

Eddy-Driven Recirculations from a Localized Transient Forcing
Eddy-Driven Recirculations from a Localized Transient Forcing
The generation of time-mean recirculation gyres from the nonlinear rectification of an oscillatory, spatially localized vorticity forcing is examined analytically and numerically. Insights into the rectification mechanism are presented and the influence of the variations of forcing parameters, stratification, and mean background flow are explored. This exploration shows that the efficiency of the rectification depends on the properties of the energy radiation from the forcing, which in turn depends on the waves that participate in the rectification process. The particular waves are selected by the relation of the forcing parameters to the available free Rossby wave spectrum. An enhanced response is achieved if the parameters are such to select meridionally propagating waves, and a resonant response results if the forcing selects the Rossby wave with zero zonal group velocity and maximum meridional group velocity, which is optimal for producing rectified flows. Although formulated in a weakly nonlinear wave limit, simulations in a more realistic turbulent system suggest that this understanding of the mechanism remains useful in a strongly nonlinear regime with consideration of mean flow effects and wave–mean flow interaction now needing to be taken into account. The problem presented here is idealized but has general application in the understanding of eddy–eddy and eddy–mean flow interactions as the contrasting limit to that of spatially broad (basinwide) forcing and is relevant given that many sources of oceanic eddies are localized in space.
0022-3670
430-447
Waterman, Stephanie
e2809e53-b45c-4b0d-9aa4-6cccfe6fcf65
Jayne, Steven R.
c0b33381-6870-4fb9-8361-6dcad0ba4a07
Waterman, Stephanie
e2809e53-b45c-4b0d-9aa4-6cccfe6fcf65
Jayne, Steven R.
c0b33381-6870-4fb9-8361-6dcad0ba4a07

Waterman, Stephanie and Jayne, Steven R. (2012) Eddy-Driven Recirculations from a Localized Transient Forcing. Journal of Physical Oceanography, 42 (3), 430-447. (doi:10.1175/JPO-D-11-060.1).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The generation of time-mean recirculation gyres from the nonlinear rectification of an oscillatory, spatially localized vorticity forcing is examined analytically and numerically. Insights into the rectification mechanism are presented and the influence of the variations of forcing parameters, stratification, and mean background flow are explored. This exploration shows that the efficiency of the rectification depends on the properties of the energy radiation from the forcing, which in turn depends on the waves that participate in the rectification process. The particular waves are selected by the relation of the forcing parameters to the available free Rossby wave spectrum. An enhanced response is achieved if the parameters are such to select meridionally propagating waves, and a resonant response results if the forcing selects the Rossby wave with zero zonal group velocity and maximum meridional group velocity, which is optimal for producing rectified flows. Although formulated in a weakly nonlinear wave limit, simulations in a more realistic turbulent system suggest that this understanding of the mechanism remains useful in a strongly nonlinear regime with consideration of mean flow effects and wave–mean flow interaction now needing to be taken into account. The problem presented here is idealized but has general application in the understanding of eddy–eddy and eddy–mean flow interactions as the contrasting limit to that of spatially broad (basinwide) forcing and is relevant given that many sources of oceanic eddies are localized in space.

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Published date: 2012
Organisations: Physical Oceanography

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 337046
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/337046
ISSN: 0022-3670
PURE UUID: 3d08340d-9122-43aa-86ba-9bbb915930a1

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Date deposited: 16 Apr 2012 14:06
Last modified: 16 Jul 2019 22:07

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