A new mechanism for the generation of quasi-zonal jets in the ocean
Author(s)Wang, Jinbo; Spall, Michael A.; Flierl, Glenn Richard; Rizzoli, Paola M.
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A simple barotropic quasi-geostrophic model is used to demonstrate that instabilities radiated from an unstable eastern boundary current can generate zonal striations in the ocean interior with realistic wavelengths and amplitudes. Nonlinear transfer of energy from the more unstable trapped modes is important for radiating modes to overcome friction. The dynamics shown here are generic enough to point to the eastern boundary current as a likely source of the observed striations extending from oceanic eastern boundaries.
DepartmentJoint Program in Oceanography/Applied Ocean Science and Engineering; Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences; Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Geophysical Research Letters
American Geophysical Union (AGU)
Wang, Jinbo et al. “A New Mechanism for the Generation of Quasi-zonal Jets in the Ocean.” Geophysical Research Letters 39.10 (2012). ©2012 American Geophysical Union
Final published version