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Baroclinic Interleaving Instability: A Second-Moment Closure Approach Public Deposited

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  • Interleaving motions on a wide, baroclinic front are modeled using a second-moment closure to represent unresolved fluxes by turbulence and salt fingering. A linear perturbation analysis reveals two broad classes of unstable modes. First are scale-selective modes comparable with interleaving as observed in oceanic fronts. These correspond well with observations in some respects but grow by a very different mechanism, which ought to be easily distinguished in hydrographic profiles. The second mode type is the so-called ultraviolet catastrophe, which is expected to lead to steppy profiles even in the absence of interleaving. Both modes are driven by positive feedbacks between interleaving and the underlying small-scale mixing processes. Contrary to expectations, use of the second-moment closure in place of earlier empirical mixing models does not lead to improved agreement with observations.
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  • Smyth, W. D., H. Burchard, L. Umlauf, 2012: Baroclinic Interleaving Instability: A Second-Moment Closure Approach. Journal of Physical Oceanography, 42, 764–784. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/JPO-D-11-066.1
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  • W.D.S. was supported by the U.S. National Science Foundation under Grant OCE0622922 and by a visiting scholarship from the Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research, Warnemunde, Germany.
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  • description.provenance : Made available in DSpace on 2012-06-26T18:08:01Z (GMT). No. of bitstreams: 1 SmythWilliamCEOASBaroclinicInterleavingInstability.pdf: 1668319 bytes, checksum: 2443815914ed7edf1e17aa6dcd29426d (MD5) Previous issue date: 2012-05
  • Vol. 42 no. 5
  • Journal of Physical Oceanography
  • description.provenance : Submitted by Deanne Bruner (deanne.bruner@oregonstate.edu) on 2012-06-26T18:08:01Z No. of bitstreams: 1 SmythWilliamCEOASBaroclinicInterleavingInstability.pdf: 1668319 bytes, checksum: 2443815914ed7edf1e17aa6dcd29426d (MD5)

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