Energy exchange in the ocean under the microscope
The expedition leads a team of scientists from Montevideo (Uruguay)) to the working area in the southeast Atlantic. In this region, they will be able to observe many of the processes that affect energy fluxes in the ocean and the ocean's exchange with the atmosphere. These are core topics in the second phase of the Collaborative Research Center TRR 181 "Energy Transfers in the Atmosphere and the Ocean," funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) and coordinated at the University of Hamburg and the University of Bremen. Researchers are investigating in various subprojects how energy is transferred between large-scale circulation via eddies and waves to local turbulence in the ocean and atmosphere.
Southeast of the Walvis Ridge in the eastern South Atlantic the so-called Agulhas rings, which are formed at the southern tip of Africa and migrate northward through the Atlantic, meet internal tides generated at the ridge. This clash affects the eddies, the propagation of the internal tidal waves, the mixing of different water masses, and thus the distribution of energy in the ocean.
"The goal of our expedition is to better understand how energy is transferred in the ocean between different scales, from the millimeters of turbulence to the hundreds of kilometers of eddies," says cruise leader Dr. Maren Walter from MARUM and the Institute of Environmental Physics at the University of Bremen.
Researchers from MARUM – Center for Marine Environmental Sciences at the University of Bremen, the University of Bremen, the University of Hamburg, the Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemünde (IOW) and the Helmholtz Center Hereon are involved in the project.
Dr. Maren Walter
Environmental Physics, University of Bremen
MARUM – Center for Marine Environmental Sciences at the University of Bremen
MARUM produces fundamental scientific knowledge about the role of the ocean and the ocean floor in the total Earth system. The dynamics of the ocean and the ocean floor significantly impact the entire Earth system through the interaction of geological, physical, biological and chemical processes. These influence both the climate and the global carbon cycle, and create unique biological systems. MARUM is committed to fundamental and unbiased research in the interests of society and the marine environment, and in accordance with the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. It publishes its quality-assured scientific data and makes it publicly available. MARUM informs the public about new discoveries in the marine environment and provides practical knowledge through its dialogue with society. MARUM cooperates with commercial and industrial partners in accordance with its goal of protecting the marine environment.