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This work discusses modons, or dipolar vortices, propagating along sloping topography. Two different regimes exist, which are studied separately using the surface quasigeostrophic equations. First, when the modon propagates in the direction opposite to topographic Rossby waves, steady solutions exist and a semianalytical method is presented for calculating these solutions. Second, when the modon propagates in the same direction as the Rossby waves, a wave wake is generated. This wake removes energy from the modon, causing it to decay slowly. Asymptotic predictions are presented for this decay and found to agree closely with numerical simulations. Over long times, decaying vortices are found to break down due to an asymmetry resulting from the generation of waves inside the vortex. A monopolar vortex moving along a wall is shown to behave in a similar way to a dipole, though the presence of the wall is found to stabilise the vortex and prevent the longtime breakdown. The problem is equivalent mathematically to a dipolar vortex moving along a density front, hence our results apply directly to this case.more » « less

A coastal eddy is modelled as a barotropic vortex propagating along a coastal shelf. If the vortex speed matches the phase speed of any coastal trapped shelf wave modes, a shelf wave wake is generated leading to a flux of energy from the vortex into the wave field. Using a simple shelf geometry, we determine analytic expressions for the wave wake and the leadingorder flux of wave energy. By considering the balance of energy between the vortex and wave field, this energy flux is then used to make analytic predictions for the evolution of the vortex speed and radius under the assumption that the vortex structure remains selfsimilar. These predictions are examined in the asymptotic limit of small rotation rate and shelf slope and tested against numerical simulations. If the vortex speed does not match the phase speed of any shelf wave, steady vortex solutions are expected to exist. We present a numerical approach for finding these nonlinear solutions and examine the parameter dependence of their structure.more » « less

null (Ed.)A simple model is presented for the evolution of a dipolar vortex propagating horizontally in a verticalslice model of a weakly stratified inviscid atmosphere, following the model of Flierl & Haines ( Phys. Fluids , vol. 6, 1994, pp. 3487–3497) for a modon on the ${\rm beta}$ plane. The dipole is assumed to evolve to remain within the family of Lamb–Chaplygin dipoles but with varying radius and speed. The dipole loses energy and impulse through internal wave radiation. It is argued, and verified against numerical solutions of the full equations, that an appropriately defined centre vorticity for the dipole is closely conserved throughout the flow evolution. Combining conservation of centre vorticity with the requirement that the dipole energy loss balances the work done on the fluid by internal wave radiation gives a model that captures much of the observed dipole decay. Similar results are noted for a cylindrical dipole propagating along the axis of a rotating fluid when the dipole axis is perpendicular to the axis of rotation and for a spherical vortex propagating horizontally in a weakly stratified fluid. The model extends to fluids of small viscosity and so provides an estimate for the relative importance of wave drag and dissipation in dipole decay.more » « less

null (Ed.)Hill's vortex is a classical solution of the incompressible Euler equations which consists of an axisymmetric spherical region of constant vorticity matched to an irrotational external flow. This solution has been shown to be a member of a oneparameter family of steady vortex rings and as such is commonly used as a simple analytic model for a vortex ring. Here, we model the decay of a Hill's vortex in a weakly rotating flow due to the radiation of inertial waves. We derive analytic results for the modification of the vortex structure by rotational effects and the generated wave field using an asymptotic approach where the rotation rate, or inverse Rossby number, is taken to be small. Using this model, we predict the decay of the vortex speed and radius by combining the flux of vortex energy to the wave field with the conservation of peak vorticity. We test our results against numerical simulations of the full axisymmetric Navier–Stokes equations.more » « less