Observations and numerical simulations of large-eddy circulation in the ocean surface mixed layer Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/articles/n296x0872

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  • Two near-surface dye releases were mapped on scales of minutes to hours temporally, meters to order 1 km horizontally, and 1–20 m vertically using a scanning, depth-resolving airborne lidar. In both cases, dye evolved into a series of rolls with their major axes approximately aligned with the wind and/or near-surface current. In both cases, roll spacing was also of order 5–10 times the mixed layer depth, considerably larger than the 1–2 aspect ratio expected for Langmuir cells. Numerical large-eddy simulations under similar forcing showed similar features, even without Stokes drift forcing. In one case, inertial shear driven by light winds induced large aspect ratio large-eddy circulation. In the second, a preexisting lateral mixed layer density gradient provided the dominant forcing. In both cases, the growth of the large-eddy structures and the strength of the resulting dispersion were highly dependent on the type of forcing.
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  • Sundermeyer, M. A., Skyllingstad, E., Ledwell, J. R., Concannon, B., Terray, E. A., Birch, D., Pierce, S. D., & Cervantes, B. (2014). Observations and numerical simulations of large-eddy circulation in the ocean surface mixed layer. Geophysical Research Letters, 41(21), 7584–7590. doi:10.1002/2014GL061637
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