skip to main content

Title: Growth and nonlinear saturation of electromagnetic ion cyclotron waves in multi-ion species magnetospheric plasma: GROWTH AND SATURATION OF EMIC WAVES
Author(s) / Creator(s):
 ;  ;  ;  ;  ;  
Publisher / Repository:
DOI PREFIX: 10.1029
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Page Range / eLocation ID:
6469 to 6484
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Abstract It is now well established that changes in the zonal wind stress over the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) do not lead to changes in its baroclinicity nor baroclinic transport, a phenomenon referred to as “eddy saturation.” Previous studies provide contrasting dynamical mechanisms for this phenomenon: on one extreme, changes in the winds lead to changes in the efficiency with which transient eddies transfer momentum to the sea floor; on the other extreme, structural adjustments of the ACC’s standing meanders increase the efficiency of momentum transfer. In this study the authors investigate the relative importance of these mechanisms using an idealized, isopycnal channel model of the ACC. Via separate diagnoses of the model’s time-mean flow and eddy diffusivity, the authors decompose the model’s response to changes in wind stress into contributions from transient eddies and the mean flow. A key result is that holding the transient eddy diffusivity constant while varying the mean flow very closely compensates for changes in the wind stress, whereas holding the mean flow constant and varying the eddy diffusivity does not. This implies that eddy saturation primarily occurs due to adjustments in the ACC’s standing waves/meanders, rather than due to adjustments of transient eddy behavior. The authors derive a quasigeostrophic theory for ACC transport saturation by standing waves, in which the transient eddy diffusivity is held fixed, and thus provides dynamical insights into standing wave adjustment to wind changes. These findings imply that representing eddy saturation in global models requires adequate resolution of the ACC’s standing meanders, with wind-responsive parameterizations of the transient eddies being of secondary importance. 
    more » « less