GULF STREAM MEANDERS: OBSERVATIONS ON PROPAGATION AND GROWTH.

D. Randolph Watts, William E. John

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

46 Scopus citations

Abstract

The authors present a new method for continuously tracking the location of the Gulf Stream using a moored array of inverted echo sounders. Time series of lateral displacements of the front, shown accurate to plus or minus 8 km, have been collected along three sections spaced 100, 150, and 200 km downstream (NE) of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, for a period of 12 months. These records are highly coherent at all periodicities longer than 4 days. From the observed phase lags, a dispersion relationship is presented for the meanders: As the period and wavelength (T, lambda ) increase from (4 days, 180 km) to (30 days, 600 km), the phase speed decreases smoothly from 40 to 20 km d** minus **1. The meanders exhibited rapid growth at periods longer than 4 days, doubling in variance in each 50-km step downstream.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9467-9476
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research
Volume87
Issue numberC12
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1982
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Forestry
  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Soil Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Palaeontology

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