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Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License.


Topographic Rossby Waves (TRWs) have been identified with the largest variability in deep current meter records along the continental slope in the Mid-Atlantic Bight (MAB). Ray tracing theory is applied to TRWs using the real bottom topography of the MAB and the observed stratification. The dispersion relation for TRWs is derived and various wavenumber limits are discussed. A computational method for tracing the waves is presented, including the necessity of smoothing the bathymetry. In the examples shown, TRW with periods of 24-48 days generally propagate southwestward, changing their wavelengths from 400 to 100 kilometers in response to the change in bottom slope. TRW paths are shown that connect from the SYNOP Central Array near 68oW to the SYNOP Inlet Array near Cape Hatteras.