Mixing by shear instability at high Reynolds number


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dc.contributor.author Geyer, W. Rockwell
dc.contributor.author Lavery, Andone C.
dc.contributor.author Scully, Malcolm E.
dc.contributor.author Trowbridge, John H.
dc.date.accessioned 2010-12-20T18:11:46Z
dc.date.available 2011-05-25T08:25:12Z
dc.date.issued 2010-11-25
dc.identifier.citation Geophysical Research Letters 37 (2010): L22607 en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1912/4281
dc.description Author Posting. © American Geophysical Union, 2010. This article is posted here by permission of American Geophysical Union for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Geophysical Research Letters 37 (2010): L22607, doi:10.1029/2010GL045272. en_US
dc.description.abstract Shear instability is the dominant mechanism for converting fluid motion to mixing in the stratified ocean and atmosphere. The transition to turbulence has been well characterized in laboratory settings and numerical simulations at moderate Reynolds number—it involves “rolling up”, i.e., overturning of the density structure within the cores of the instabilities. In contrast, measurements in an energetic estuarine shear zone reveal that the mixing induced by shear instability at high Reynolds number does not primarily occur by overturning in the cores; rather it results from secondary shear instabilities within the zones of intensified shear separating the cores. This regime is not likely to be observed in the relatively low Reynolds number flows of the laboratory or in direct numerical simulations, but it is likely a common occurrence in the ocean and atmosphere. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship This research was supported by NSF grant OCE‐0824871 and ONR grant N00014‐0810495. en_US
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher American Geophysical Union en_US
dc.relation.uri http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2010GL045272
dc.subject Stratification en_US
dc.subject Turbulence en_US
dc.subject Mixing en_US
dc.title Mixing by shear instability at high Reynolds number en_US
dc.type Article en_US
dc.identifier.doi 10.1029/2010GL045272

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