Turbulence in the Upper Layer

  • Thomas Osborn
Part of the NATO Conference Series book series (NATOCS, volume 17)


The role is examined of small scale turbulence in determining the distribution of chemical species and other scalar quantities. Turbulent stirring is identified as the cumulative effect of fluctuations in the velocity components combined with fluctuations in the concentrations. Recent work enables the vertical eddy diffusivity coefficient to be parameterized in terms of small scale parameters for two portions of the water column; the region just below the surface and the region that is stratified. Much more information is necessary before parameterizations can be related directly to bulk parameters such as wind speed or Väisälä frequency. Recent measurements from a submarine of turbulent fluctuations and salt fingers are shown as examples of the small scale processes in the ocean.


Mixed Layer Internal Wave Velocity Shear Passive Scalar Isopycnal Surface 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas Osborn
    • 1
  1. 1.Chesapeake Bay InstituteShady SideUSA

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