Ben Storer , Applied Mathematics, University of Waterloo
The Stability Characteristics of Large-Scale Oceanic Waves and Vortices
The world's oceans are dynamically rich systems with active features existing on an extraordinary range of spatial and temporal scales. In the context of large-scale features, two prominent and seemingly ubiquitous formations are large oceanic waves and vortices.
For many years, persistent zonal jet structures have been observed in the major oceans, and recent studies have proposed that the destabilization of various ocean waves are capable of producing similar jet features. Early work on the study of large-scale equatorial waves is presented, and a direction for future work is discussed.
Oceanic vortices are capable of transporting physical and biogeochemical elements, and recent applications of seismic measurement techniques have provided high resolution measurements of observed large-scale eddies. Through stability analysis, the nature of vortex instabilities can be studied and may provide implications regarding property transport. A time-stepping method for linear stability analysis is presented and applications in quasi-geostrophy are considered.