Some numerical solutions of the barotropic vorticity equation applied to the Gulf of Mexico

E. E. VILLANUEVA, V. MANUEL MENDOZA, JULIAN ADEM

Abstract

Numerical solutions of the barotropic vorticity equation under forcing by wind stress, and mass transport between the basins of the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico, are shown, in the first part of this study, the equation was solved for a steady flow with a flat bottom of 200m depth, realistic coastlines and horizontal resolution of 25 km. In the second part, we added the bottom bathymetry, and the equation was solved for the steady-state and non-steady-state. In the non-steady regime, we found that the Loop Current (LC) penetrates into the Gulf and bend westward into unstable configuration to give rise to a periodic eddy shedding regime, in which the anticyclonic eddies are shedded of the Loop Current and propagated westward as solitary Rossby waves. The lifetime of these anticyclonic eddies is about of 120 days; they have a size from 275 to 440 km and propagation speed of about 7.3 km day-1.

Keywords

Barotropic Vorticity Equation; Eddy Shedding Gulf of México

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