Coastal ocean dynamics: tracking vortice


The FGO team research focuses on physical oceanic processes, within the framework of th ATOME group, on the campus of Polytechnic, with the Dynamic Meteorology Laboratory (LMD) and Hydrodynamics Laboratory (LadHyX), and in collaboration with other laboratories such as MIO (Marseille). Our approach is multidisciplinary, with studies of in-situ data, realistic numerical simulations and laboratory experiments using a rotating table in a theoretical framework.

One goal is to understand the formation of mesoscale (of the order of magnitude of the radius of deformation) and sub-mesoscale (less than the radius of deformation) dynamical structures and to quantify their importance in transportating water masses properties (organic matter, heat). In particular, we seek to evaluate the role of bathymetry in generating coastal instability that will further create eddies, that can potentially migrate to the center of the basin and thus actively participate in the cross-shore exchange. These issues are particularly important to analyze the evolution of marine ecosystems.

In this context, the FGO team has implemented an algorithm (still under development) to automatically detect the eddy structures from velocity fields, and monitor them (size, energy content, trajectories) over time. This algorithm is applied to the altimeter data (AVISO) and outputs of numerical models developed in our team.