Atmospheric and Hydrospheric Sciences(A)
Session Sub CategoryOcean Sciences & Ocean Environment
Session IDA-OS15
TitleOcean Mixing Matters
Short titleOcean Mixing Matters
Main ConvenerNameToshiyuki Hibiya
AffiliationDepartment of Earth and Planetary Science, Graduate School of Science, University of Tokyo
Co-Convener 1NameLouis St Laurent
AffiliationWoods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Co-Convener 2NameRenChieh Lien
AffiliationUniversity of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA
Co-Convener 3NameRobin Ann Robertson
AffiliationUniversity of New South Wales Canberra
Scope Mixing plays critical roles in the ocean, affecting key physical, biological, and chemical processes. The forces and mechanisms leading to mixing processes vary spatially both within the water column and between the coastal and open ocean. Near the surface, wind and cooling convection are the key driving force. Mixing in the surface mixed layer modifies the sea surface temperature, which in turn affects air-sea interaction processes. Deep ocean mixing, on the other hand, is driven by tides, boundary effects, and interactions of currents with topography. Deep mixing is an important factor in maintaining vertical stratification and in determining the strength and structure of the global overturning circulation. Both surface and deep ocean mixing are impacted by and, in turn, impact climate change. Ocean mixing is key for water mass formation, such as that of North Pacific Intermediate Water and Subtropical Mode Water. Planktonic ecosystems are well known to be controlled through nutrient pumping associated with ocean mixing. Nevertheless, vertical mixing, even the reasonably well-understood tidal mixing, is not parameterized well in ocean and climate models. As grid resolutions for general ocean circulation and climate models increase, accurate sub-grid scale mixing in the models will become even more crucial. This session encompasses ocean mixing of all aspects, all scales, and the entire water column: from theory, observations, and modelling; from microstructure to large eddies; from the surface through the interior to the near boundary benthic mixing.
Type of presentationOral and Poster presentation
Invited authors