Ocean mixing: from horizontal barriers to mixing to vertical density currents

Speaker:Professor Hezi Gildor
Affiliation:Institute of Earth Sciences, The Hebrew University
Location:Lidow Rosen Auditorium (323)


Ocean mixing play a major role in ocean dynamics, in

physical-biological interactions, and in the dispersion of larvae and

pollutants. In this talk I will present two studies:

In the first study we use a data set of surface ocean currents

measured by high-frequency radar to identify the existence of

temporary barriers to mixing. The existence of such barriers requires

a new approach to the way mixing is parameterized in ocean and climate


The second study deals with the dynamics of density currents, an

important component of the oceanic meridional overturning circulation,

since they affect ocean climate and maintain a stable stratified world

ocean. Our observations and high-resolution 3D model results show

pulses of density currents that form over night during the winter

months. The numerical simulations demonstrate that it is necessary to

include the diurnal cycle of air-sea fluxes in climate models in order

to correctly simulate these currents in climate models.