College of Engineering

Physics MS Thesis Defense: Eric Holmes

Date(s): 7/13/2010 1:00 PM - 7/13/20103:00 PM
Location: Seng - 102
Contact: Amit Tandon 508-999-8357

Title: "Simulations of submesoscale ocean eddies coupled with baroclinicity below"

We report results from fully non-hydrostatic, three-dimensional ocean model simulations of an upper ocean front to analyze vertical fluxes of buoyancy and tracers at the sub-mesoscale. Previous analysis of the vertical transport due to these fronts showed intense submesoscale vertical velocities attributable to a combination of mixed layer frontogenesis and downfront non-linear Ekman effects. This model has been optimized and scaled up for use on modern multi-core computer architecture, achieving an efficiency that allows modeling larger domains with meso- and submeso-scale interaction at high resolution. The vertical fluxes are examined herewith for a range of mixed layer depth, length scale and vertical extent of features, frontal strength, and stratification, with varying wind stress. The observed upwelling and downwelling at the submesoscale has implications on physical, chemical and biological export. Methods for model parameterization of advective vertical tracer fluxes have also been examined.

Advisor: Dr. Amit Tandon
Committee Members: Dr. Gaurav Khanna,Physics Department and Dr. Amala Mahadevan,Boston University

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