Sensitivity on Frontal Processes to the Assimilation of Remotely Sensed Data.
Final rept. 1 Jul 93-31 Jul 95,
WOODS HOLE OCEANOGRAPHIC INSTITUTION MA
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The scientific objectives of this project were to gain a better understanding of how external forcing and eddy fluxes influence frontal properties such as the mean frontal structure, eddy variability, cross-front exchange, subduction, and biological productivity. During the past two years, this grant supported or partially supported the publication of 4 manuscripts in refereed journals, 2 articles in non-refereed journals, and 7 oral presentation. The common theme to each of these studies is improving our understanding of frontal dynamics and the role of fronts in the general circulation. The results see attached relating to how water is exchanged and subducted at both open ocean and near coastal fronts give insight into how fronts act as controlling factors in the exchange of water masses between different flow regimes. It has also been found here that even weak horizontal deformation fields can drastically alter the stability characteristics of strong frontal regions. Such frontogenesis mechanisms must be properly represented if one is to accurately predict frontal formation or evolution on time scales of days to years. Finally, a fundamental understanding of the physics that govern cross-frontal exchange processes is key to parameterizing their influences ion non-eddy resolving general circulation models, work towards this end has been started.
- Physical and Dynamic Oceanography