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Ocean Dynamics pp 445-486 | Cite as

The Wind-Driven Circulation

  • Dirk Olbers
  • Jürgen Willebrand
  • Carsten Eden
Chapter

Abstract

In this chapter we discuss the effects of forcing the ocean by a prescribed windstress. We will start the discussion for an ocean in steady state and constant density, followed by a consideration of the effects of stratification and topography. Important concepts and results are the Ekman layers, Ekman spiral and Ekman transport, the Sverdrup transport and the Stommel/Munk gyre models of the large-scale circulation. The impact of topography and stratification on the depth-averaged flow is introduced using the concept of the JEBAR-term and the bottom pressure torque, which are both further investigated using the model BARBI. This model represents the interaction of barotropic and baroclinic fields in a minimal way. The spin-up of the wind-driven circulation by wave processes was presented in Section 8.2.6.

Keywords

Potential Vorticity Bottom Friction Subtropical Gyre Thermocline Depth Ekman Layer 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Alfred-Wegener-Institut für Polar- und MeeresforschungBremerhavenGermany
  2. 2.Leibniz-Institut für Meereswissenschaften IFM-GEOMARKielGermany
  3. 3.Institute of Marine ScienceUniversity HamburgHamburgGermany

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