Oceanic vortex mergers are not isolated but influenced by the β-effect and surrounding eddies.


:Oceanic vortices are ubiquitous in the ocean. They dominate the sub-inertial energy spectrum, and their dynamics is key for the evolution of the water column properties. The merger of two like-signed coherent vortices, which ultimately results in the formation of a larger vortex, provides an efficient mechanism for the lateral mixing of water masses in the ocean. Understanding the conditions of such interaction in the ocean is thus essential. Here, we use a merger detection algorithm to draw a global picture of this process in the ocean. We show that vortex mergers are not isolated, contrary to the hypothesis made in most earlier studies. Paradoxically, the merging distance is well reproduced by isolated vortex merger numerical simulations, but it is imperative to consider both the β-effect and the presence of neighbouring eddies to fully understand the physics of oceanic vortex merger.


Sci Rep


Scientific reports


de Marez C,Carton X,L'Hégaret P,Meunier T,Stegner A,Le Vu B,Morvan M




Has Abstract


2020-02-19 00:00:00












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