
1. has indepth knowledge of the mathematical formulation of the largescale winddriven and thermohalinedriven ocean circulation
2. knows the quasigeostrophic theory of the winddriven ocean circulation and the underlying physics
3. understands the concepts of continuously stratified and multilayer ocean models, and the effect of density stratification on ocean flows
4. is able to model the adjustment of a midlatitude ocean flow to a timedependent windstress forcing, and knows the role of Rossby waves in this process
5. understands the physics of the equatorial current system and is able to model
equatorial Kelvin waves/Rossby waves
6. is able to model and describe the physical concepts of oceanatmosphere coupled processes and ocean adjustment processes related to El Nino


The ocean circulation is driven by windforcing and by density differences, the latter arising through gradients in temperature and salinity. After a brief description of the ocean current systems which are presently observed, this course focuses on understanding the physical processes that determine the spatial pattern and amplitude of the currents and their variability. After a recapitulation of basic principles of geophysical fluid dynamics, the theory of the steady homogeneous winddriven ocean circulation will be presented. It leads to an explanation of the presence of strong western boundary currents in midlatitude ocean basins (i.e., the Gulf Stream in the Atlantic Ocean). Subsequently, the midlatitude theory is extended to include transient phenomena (waves and instabilities) and the effects of stratification. Next, the problem of the existence of the ocean's peculiar vertical density distribution serves as an introduction to the theory of the planetary density driven (or thermohaline) circulation. In a similar way, the problems of the dynamical existence of the equatorial countercurrent and equatorial undercurrent motivates to consider the theory of the equatorial ocean circulation. Finally, a basic view of the processes governing the Antarctic Circumpolar Current is presented.




 CompetenciesEntry requirementsYou must meet the following requirements Assigned study entrance permit for the master

  Required materialsBookDynamical Oceanography, H. A. Dijkstra, Springer, 2008, 408pp. http://www.springer.com/geosciences/oceanography/book/9783540763758
Boek kan gekocht worden via secretariaat IMAU 

 Recommended materialsBookIntroductory dynamical oceanography, Pond, S. and Pickard, G.L., Pergamom Press, 1991. 
 BookGeophysical Fluid Dynamics, Pedlosky, J., SpringerVerlag, 1987. 
 BookIntroduction to Geophysical Fluid Dynamics, CushmanRoisin, B. , Prentice Hall, 1994. 
 Software 
 Instructional formatsLecture General remarksDuring the course, several problem sets will be handed out. Students are encouraged to work on these problems and to hand in the solutions. Furthermore, the students work in groups on small projects to get familiar with data visualisation and modelling.
 Tutorial

 TestsExamTest weight   100 
Minimum grade   5.5 
AssessmentCourse grading: Final exam: 50%. Problem sets: 25%. Projects: 25%. There is no midterm exam.


 