12.820 / 12.822 Turbulence in the Ocean and Atmosphere, Spring 2005

Examples of turbulent flows at the surface of the sun, in the earth's atmosphere, in the Gulf Stream at the ocean surface, and in a vulcanic eruption. (Images courtesy of NASA, NOAA and USGS.)

Course Description

The course will present the phenomena, theory, and modeling of turbulence in the Earth's oceans and atmosphere. The scope will range from centimeter to planetary scale motions. The regimes of turbulence will include homogeneous isotropic three dimensional turbulence, convection, boundary layer turbulence, internal waves, two dimensional turbulence, quasi-geostrophic turbulence, and planetary scale motions in the ocean and atmosphere.


The mathematics and physics required for admission to the graduate curriculum in the EAPS department, fluid dynamics at the level taught in 12.800, or consent of the instructor.


Prof. Raffaele Ferrari
Prof. Glenn R Flierl
Course Meeting Times
Tuesdays: 1.00-2.30
(MIT 24-411, WHOI Clark 271)
Thursdays: 10.30-12.00
(MIT 9-152, WHOI Clark 271)