WP 1

Observation of physical eddy dynamics

Work Package Leaders



Eddies, whirling structures with a diameter of about 100 km (a scale called “mesoscale”), are associated with very specific ocean dynamics, see figure 1. The dynamical processes are typically at much smaller horizontal scales from 100 m to 10 km (called “submesoscale”). Improved understanding of the submesoscale dynamical processes in and around eddies, and their link to biogeochemical cycling and ecosystem responses, is key to the REEBUS project. WP1 will work collaborate closely with WP2 which is looking at the eddy ocean dynamics from a modelling perspective. Our findings will be exchanged with the other work packages to help them to constrain the impact of ocean dynamics on their findings. Key to our work is the conduction of experiments at sea as well as using existing data.


General Questions and Research topics

Overarching Goal: Improve understanding of mixing and vertical advective processes in mesoscale eddies

  • Determine the strength of submesoscale processes within eddies and their role for the fluxes of biogeochemical relevant solutes and particles
  • Investigate the spatial and temporal variability of mixing processes and quantify diapycnal fluxes of solutes and particles within eddies
  • Determine internal wave – eddy interaction processes and quantify its contribution to elevated mixing within eddies

Figure 1. A composite vertical section through an anticyclonic mesoscale eddy in the Cape Verde area. (left part) oxygen content highlighting the core of the eddy between 100 to 200m depth, (right) sketch of processes interacting and ultimately creating the fine structure seen in the left. Picture credit: Karstensen et al. 2017.