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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-2019-90
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-2019-90
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 06 Aug 2019

Submitted as: research article | 06 Aug 2019

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Ocean Science (OS).

Rotation of floating particles in submesoscale cyclonic and anticyclonic eddies: a model study for the southeastern Baltic Sea

Victor Zhurbas1, Germo Väli2, and Natalia Kuzmina1 Victor Zhurbas et al.
  • 1Shirshov Institute of Oceanology, Russian Academy of Sciences, 36 Nakhimovsky Prospect, 117997 Moscow, Russia
  • 2Tallinn University of Technology, Department of Marine Systems, Akadeemia tee 15A, 12618 Tallinn, Estonia

Abstract. It was assumed that the overwhelming dominance of cyclonic spirals on satellite images of the sea surface could be caused by some sort of differences between rotary characteristics of the submesoscale cyclonic and anticyclonic eddies. This hypothesis was tested by means of numerical experiments with synthetic floating Lagrangian particles embedded in a regional circulation model of the southeastern Baltic Sea with very high horizontal resolution (0.125 nautical mile grid). The numerical experiments showed that the cyclonic spirals can be formed both from a horizontally uniform initial distribution of floating particles and from the initially lined up particles during the advection time of the order of 1 day. Statistical processing of the trajectories of the synthetic floating particles allowed to conclude that the submesoscale cyclonic eddies differ from the anticyclonic eddies in three ways favouring the formation of the spirals: the former can be characterized by a considerably higher angular velocity and a more pronounced differential rotation as well as by a negative helicity.

Victor Zhurbas et al.
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Victor Zhurbas et al.
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