A Numerical Study of Detached Shear Layers in a Rotating Sliced Cylinder

M. A. Page

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The low Rossby number flow in a rotating cylinder with an inclined bottom, of small slope, is examined when part of the lid of the container is rotating at a slightly different rate. The resulting flow is calculated numerically by solving the governing equations for the twodimensional geostrophic motion which approximates the flow in most of the fluid including the inertially-modified E4-layers. The presence of ageostrophic regions, on the container walls and beneath the velocity discontinuity on the lid, is accounted for in the governing equations and their boundary conditions. This study supplements previous work on this configuration, in which the zero Rossby number flow was calculated and experimental results were presented, by enabling a direct comparison to be made between the results of the low Rossby number theory and the experiments. The numerical results for a range of Rossby and Ekman numbers compare well with those from the experiments despite a severe limitation on the size of the Rossby number arising from the analysis in the ageostrophic part of the detached shear layer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-69
Number of pages19
JournalGeophysical & Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1982
Externally publishedYes

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