Modelling of Meddy-topography interactions
Description of the host institution
The project will be carried out in the Geophysical and Environmental
Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, Department of Civil Engineering, University
of Dundee where extensive laboratory facilities are available for
modelling studies of oceanic flows.
The laboratory is equipped with 5 rotating turntables, an 8m long
internal wave tank, two recirculating flow channels with prescribed
density and velocity fields and two rotating tow-tanks.
All facilities are computer-controlled with state-of-the-art
data acquisition and data storage.
Flow visualisation is accomplished by means of camera and video-based
systems appropriate for the flow under consideration and data analysis
is made possible by the DigImage packages acquired for automated
determination of velocity and vorticity fields within any flow.
An Argon-ion laser, with attached fibre optics and beam spreader is used
not only for illuminating any plane of interest in the flow but also
to utilise laser-induced fluorescence for the remote, non-intrusive
determination of density fields within the fluid.
Turbulence experiments are carried out using the laser-induced fluorescence
technique and the automated particle tracking facility, with further
instrumentation based upon an array of very rapid response
microconductivity probes. Image processing of the video-based
laser-induced fluorescence scans of given planes is accomplished
using the DigImage software.
Thus far, 4 video cameras and 3 Super VHS VCR machines are available
to service the demands of the group.
The group has easy access to data from the University Satellite Receiving
Station and remote sensing studies also constitute an important
A number of large projects are currently funded from national and
EU (MAST) sources with current active grants totalling of 1M ECU.
These projects (with sponsors) include modelling studies of
The laboratory receives additional support with relatively minor funding
from NATO Scientific Affairs Division and The British Council to
facilitate Visiting Student and Visiting Scientist arrangements.
In addition, the laboratory receives a number of students from other
EU countries who spend short periods (typically 4-6 months) to carry
out training projects associated with their home-based degrees.
Strong established formal links are between the laboratory and
(i) Coriolis Laboratory, Institut de Mécanique de Grenoble (FR),
(ii) the Department of Mechanics, University of Oslo (NO),
(iii) the Technical University of Eindhoven (NL), and
(iv) the Department of Oceanography, University of Stockholm (SW).
The laboratory has participated in the MAST I and MAST II programmes
(FLUXMACHINE I, FLUXMACHINE II, MORENA and PELAGOS)
and is included in a number of MAST III applications already submitted.
The laboratory currently participates in joint experiments at the
Coriolis Laboratory in Grenoble as part of the EU Grands Installations
Programme. Strong collaborative research links exist with other UK
Universities and joint research grants are currently held with groups at the
University of Edinburgh, Manchester, Bradford and Loughborough.
The candidate will have access to all the above facilities and will join
a group of 6-7 postgraduate Research Assistants and PhD students,
together with 3-4 postdoctoral scientists and visiting scientists.
The group is lead by Professor P.A. Davies and is supported by its own
- pycnocline elevation and diapycnal mixing in the lee of deep
ocean island structures (NERC),
- internal waves in 2-layer stratified seas (HSE),
- diapycnal mixing associated with surface wave breaking (NERC),
- frontal instability and filament formation along the Iberian coast
(MAST III MORENA),
- river plumes and frontal formation in the English Channel (MAST III
- topographic and stratification effects on shelf edge flows
- spin up processes in 2-layer fluid systems in containers of complex
shape (EPSRC), and
- intermittent buoyant discharges (EPSRC).
NERC = UK Natural Environmental Research Council
EPSRC = UK Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council
HSE = UK Health & Safety Executive.
Text by Peter Davies.
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last modified: 27 February 2000