Third M.I.T. Conference on Computational Fluid and Solid Mechanics June 14–17, 2005  

On the influence of diabatic effects on the motion of 3D-mesoscale vortices within a baroclinic shear flow

Eileen Mikusky, Antony Z. Owinoh, Rupert Klein*
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, D14412, Potsdam, Germany

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Three-dimensional concentrated vortices with vertical extensions throughout the whole troposphere and diameters corresponding to the sub-synoptic gradient wind regime are studied. In particular we focus on mechanisms that maintain the vertical coherent structure of such vortices within a baroclinic shear flow. Using matched asymptotic methods we derive equations for the horizontal velocity of the vertically oriented centerline of the vortices. We find that the vortices are not only advected by the background flow but that also their movement is influenced by diabatic effects. In this fashion, an initially vertically coherent vortex can be stabilized by diabatic effects even within a baroclinic shear flow.

Keywords:  Concentrated vortices; Matched asymptotic methods; Baroclinic shear flow; Diabatic effects

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