Engineering Reference Frames in the Ocean
Monday, 5 March 2012
1:30 to 2:20 PM
Mechanical Engineering Building – Room 238
Oceanographer, Applied Physics Laboratory
Assistant Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of Washington
The choice of reference frame is central to any research in fluid mechanics. In the ocean, the choice is further complicated by many practical limits in measurement platforms. This talk will present several recent applications of fixed (Eulerian) and fluid-following (Lagrangian) measurements in the ocean, and the engineering to support those measurements. Special attention will be given to the wave-following reference frame and the development of a new platform, the Surface Wave Instrument Float with Tracking (SWIFT). Measurements from the SWIFT are used to measure the turbulent cascade of energy during wave breaking, a process central to air-sea interaction and wave evolution. Details of the design, testing, and application of SWIFT will be presented as a case study in ocean engineering for ocean science.