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Free Content Drifter spectra and diffusivities

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Abstract:

The relationships between Eulerian and Lagrangian (or drifter) diffusivities and spectra are explored in detail using the Lagrangian correlation predictor due to Corrsin (1959). The analysis, applicable to homogeneous, isotropic velocity fields shows that an important dimensionless parameter in the Euler-Lagrange transformations is the ratio α of Eulerian integral TE to advective Ta time scales. It is found that the diffusivity may be approximated to within 10% by the function q2TE (q2 + α2)−1/2 where 2 is the mean-square velocity component and q ≃ 0.63. This result is found to be insensitive to the shape of the Eulerian spectra. It is also shown that a (wavenumber)−3 energy spectrum may be identified in Lagrangian frequency space by a corresponding (frequency)−3 spectrum. The relationships between drifter and fixed current meter spectra and time-scales are also explored. It is suggested that for regions of strong mean flow, U > , that the diffusivity might well be approximated by q √3 UTu where Tu is the mooring velocity time scale.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1357/002224085788437334

Publication date: February 1, 1985

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  • The Journal of Marine Research publishes peer-reviewed research articles covering a broad array of topics in physical, biological and chemical oceanography. Articles that deal with processes, as well as those that report significant observations, are welcome. In the area of biology, studies involving coupling between ecological and physical processes are preferred over those that report systematics. Authors benefit from thorough reviews of their manuscripts, where an attempt is made to maximize clarity. The time between submission and publication is kept to a minimum; there is no page charge.
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