Inclass Exercise 4 Key- Oceanographers

(100 pts)


Examine the three images below which show the current information, SST, and altimetry for January 1, 2008.


(a)  Indicate the following on the SST chart:  (a) Loop current;  (b) one cold ring or eddy;  (c)  one warm ring or eddy.  (10 pts each, for a total of 30 pts)


See Chart.


(b)  Geostrophic balance occurs in both the atmosphere and the ocean. Briefly discuss geostrophic balance in the oceans. (Metr 201 link to discussion of geostrophic flow in the atmosphere and ocean.)

See discussion on link. (35 pts)


(c) Cite the evidence you see on the chart that the currents shown are in geostrophic balance.


The evidence is clear on this sequence of charts. The current vectors lie parallel to the altimetery contours in the vicinity of the Loop Current for example, with currents flowing clockwise around the altimetery high north of Cuba. (35 pts)