eCite Digital Repository

Eddy cancellation of the Ekman cell in subtropical gyres


Doddridge, EW and Marshall, DP and McC Hogg, A, Eddy cancellation of the Ekman cell in subtropical gyres, Journal of Physical Oceanography, 46, (10) pp. 2995-3010. ISSN 0022-3670 (2016) [Refereed Article]

Pending copyright assessment - Request a copy

DOI: doi:10.1175/JPO-D-16-0097.1


The presence of large-scale Ekman pumping associated with the climatological wind stress curl is the textbook explanation for low biological activity in the subtropical gyres. Using an idealized, eddy-resolving model, it is shown that Eulerian-mean Ekman pumping may be opposed by an eddy-driven circulation, analogous to the way in which the atmospheric Ferrel cell and the Southern Ocean Deacon cell are opposed by eddy-driven circulations. Lagrangian particle tracking, potential vorticity fluxes, and depth–density streamfunctions are used to show that, in the model, the rectified effect of eddies acts to largely cancel the Eulerian-mean Ekman downwelling. To distinguish this effect from eddy compensation, it is proposed that the suppression of Eulerian-mean downwelling by eddies be called "eddy cancellation."

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:subtropical gyres, mesoscale eddies
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Oceanography
Research Field:Physical oceanography
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Marine systems and management
Objective Field:Oceanic processes (excl. in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean)
UTAS Author:Doddridge, EW (Dr Edward Doddridge)
ID Code:150152
Year Published:2016
Web of Science® Times Cited:12
Deposited By:Oceans and Cryosphere
Deposited On:2022-05-30
Last Modified:2022-06-01

Repository Staff Only: item control page