Harry Swinney: Dynamics and energetics of waves inside the oceans

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The Department of Applied Mathematics is pleased to host this series of colloquium lectures, funded in part by a generous gift from the Boeing Company. This series will bring to campus prominent applied mathematicians from around the world.

Speaker: Harry Swinney, University of Texas - Austin

Date: May 11th, 2017, 4pm, reception to follow

Location: (SMI 120)

Title: Dynamics and energetics of waves inside the oceans

Abstract: The ocean is stratified as a consequence of decreasing temperature and increasing salinity with depth. Much of the energy in the oceans is in internal gravity waves generated by tidal flow over ocean bottom topography. These waves can travel thousands of kilometers, and they play a major role in ocean mixing and circulation. However, it is difficult to make accurate estimates of the conversion of tidal energy into internal wave energy because of the complexity of ocean topography and the constructive and destructive interference of the internal waves. This talk presents results from laboratory experiments, numerical simulations, and ocean and satellite observations that yield insight into internal wave dynamics and improve estimates of the total internal wave energy.