Ocean Circulation

The circulation of the oceans is a fundamental process in the movement of energy and materials around the planet. In recent years, the interaction between ocean circulation and climate change has become one of the most active research frontiers in the Earth sciences. Ocean circulation, and the geophysical fluid dynamical principles that underpin it, are subjects taught at graduate level in many Earth science, oceanography, and atmospheric sciences departments. Ocean circulation is driven and regulated by interaction with the atmosphere (wind), by tidal dissipation, and by regional differences in the temperature and salinity, and subsequently, density, of the oceans. There are several books that deal with wind-driven ocean circulation, but few, if any, cover thermohaline-driven circulation and its energetics. This is the first advanced textbook to cover both these important aspects of large-scale ocean circulation. It is based on Rui Xin Huang's many years of teaching an advanced course at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

This book provides a concise introduction to the dynamics and thermodynamics of the oceanic general circulation, including the thermodynamics of seawater and the energetics of the ocean circulation; an exhaustive theory of wind-driven circulation; thermohaline circulation, including water mass formation/erosion, deep circulation, and the hydrological cycle; and the interaction between the wind-driven and thermohaline circulation. Highly illustrated to help the reader establish a clear mental picture of the physical principles involved, it will be invaluable on advanced courses in ocean circulation and as a reference text for oceanographers and other Earth scientists.

Rui Xin Huang is a Scientist Emeritus at the Department of Physical Oceanography, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. He has been awarded the Von Alan Clarke Jr. Chair of Excellence in Oceanography at the same institution and has served as Chair Professor, Green Card Project, Ocean University of China. He has also worked at the Institute of Mechanics, Academy of Science, China; Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Geophysical Fluid Dynamical Laboratory, Princeton; and the University of Hawaii. His research interests include physical oceanography and climate dynamics, and he has authored/co-authored over 90 scientific publications in these areas.

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