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A laboratory experiment and numerical simulation of an isolated barotropic eddy in a basin with topographic β

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  26 April 2006

Akira Masuda
Affiliation:
Ocean Research Institute, University of Tokyo, Tokyo 164, Japan
Kenji Marubayashi
Affiliation:
Research Institute for Applied Mechanics, Kyushu University, Kasuga 816, Japan
Michiyoshi Ishibashi
Affiliation:
Research Institute for Applied Mechanics, Kyushu University, Kasuga 816, Japan

Abstract

An initial localized eddy was generated in a rotating tank by a source–sink method to study the behaviour of an isolated barotropic eddy on a β-plane. The evolution of the eddy was compared with the laboratory experiments by Firing & Beardsley (1976) and by Takematsu & Kita (1985, 1988), confirming the northwestward (southwestward) translation of a cyclonic (anticyclonic) isolated eddy due to nonlinear effects. Anticyclonic eddies were contrasted with cyclonic eddies in the tank experiment, showing a cyclonic–anticyclonic asymmetry due to the topographic β as a substitute for the planetary β. The fluid experiment was simulated well by numerical simulation based on the quasi-geostrophic vorticity equation. Numerical experiments verified the northwestward (southwestward) translation both for an initially Gaussian and initially Rankine-type isolated cyclonic (anticyclonic) eddy.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
© 1990 Cambridge University Press

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