Merging and Migration of Two Meddies

Schultz Tokos, Kathy L., Hinrichsen, Hans-Harald and Zenk, Walter (1994) Merging and Migration of Two Meddies Journal of Physical Oceanography, 24 (10). pp. 2129-2141. DOI 10.1175/1520-0485(1994)024<2129:MAMOTM>2.0.CO;2.

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In this study a scenario is developed of two adjacent Mediterranean Water eddies (meddies) as they were observed merging and drifting through the Iberian Basin. Observations are based on four RAFOS floats (at 850–1050 dbar), two hydrographic surveys (centered roughly at 38°N, 24°W), and trajectories of surface drifters (drogued at 100 m). In April 1991, the meddy A was identified and labeled by surface drifters. During the revisit one month later two meddies were encountered, B1 and B2, in the vicinity of the former meddy A. The coalescence of B1 (subsequently identified as A, one month older) and B2 is inferred from a simple kinematic model describing the observed movement of the RAFOS floats for up to three months after the second CTD survey. The deduced vorticity front, radius ∼15 km, within B1 was of insufficient strength to keep the core waters of B1 isolated and prevent the absorption of B1 by B2. The resulting meddy (B1 + B2) showed a clear near-surface dynamical signal. Its deep root (1800 m) could explain the expulsion from the meddy of the remaining RAFOS float and surface drifter at the time of the meddy's collision with the Josephine Seamount. For the first time, a set of Lagrangian and hydrographic observations give direct evidence that neighboring meddies can merge as predicted by theoretical considerations.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: R.V. Poseidon; POS182; RAFOS floats; ARGOS
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB3 Marine Ecology > FB3-EV Evolutionary Ecology of Marine Fishes
OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB1 Ocean Circulation and Climate Dynamics > FB1-PO Physical Oceanography
Refereed: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.1175/1520-0485(1994)024<2129:MAMOTM>2.0.CO;2
ISSN: 0022-3670
Projects: SFB133
Date Deposited: 04 Apr 2016 09:01
Last Modified: 04 Apr 2016 09:01

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