Two Paired Eddies Travel Faster and Further Than One
The first observational evidence of dipole eddy pairs (modons) in the southern midlatitude ocean reveals that they move faster, live longer, and travel greater distances compared to single eddies.
Typical ocean eddies travel predominantly westwards at speeds close to the local baroclinic Rossby wave speed that may be accelerated or decelerated by the speed and direction of the (often) stronger mean background flow. However, an exception to this is theoretically expected to occur for dipole eddy pairs, known as modons, that couple together to have a zero net mass anomaly so there is no longer any constraint on the propagation speed or direction. Hughes and Miller  observed nine such modons in altimetry data in the southern midlatitude ocean. The rapidly moving modons were tracked over large distances, both with and against the mean flow, and were coherent for more than six months. The modons thus offer an efficient means to carry vast amounts of anomalous heat, nutrients and carbon that might have important ecological consequences....more
-- Janet Sprintall, Editor, Geophysical Research Letters,
- Article Category
- Research Letters
Rapid Water Transport by Long‐Lasting Modon Eddy Pairs in the Southern Midlatitude Oceans
- First Published:
- | Vol:
- | DOI:
Eos.org: Earth & Space Science News
Download the App
New Android App Available!
iOS App for iPad or iPhone
AGU Career Center
Featured Special Collection
The atmosphere varies naturally on all length scales from millimeters to thousands of kilometers, and on all time scales from seconds to decades and longer. This special collection of Geophysical Research Letters synthesizes and summarizes that variability through a phenomenological census. The collection brings together some of the most influential and definitive papers to have been published in this journal in recent years. The topics covered include turbulence on time scales of seconds and minutes, gravity waves on time scales of hours, weather systems on time scales of days, atmospheric blocking on time scales of weeks, the Madden–Julian Oscillation on time scales of months, the Quasi-Biennial Oscillation and El Niño–Southern Oscillation on time scales of years, and the North Atlantic, Arctic, Antarctic, Pacific Decadal, and Atlantic Multi-decadal Oscillations on time scales of decades. The collection is accompanied by a Commentary article, which provides an authoritative, concise, and accessible point of reference for the most important modes of atmospheric variability.
A Census of Atmospheric Variability from Seconds to Decades