The Dynamics of Finite-Difference Models of the Shallow-Water Equations

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  • 1 Laboratoire de Métérologie Dynamique du C.N.R.S., Paris, France
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Abstract

Two simple numerical models of the shallow-water equations identical in all respects but for their con-servation properties have been tested regarding their internal mixing processes. The experiments show that violation of enstrophy conservation results in a spurious accumulation of rotational energy in the smaller scales, reflected by an unrealistic increase of enstrophy, which ultimately produces a finite rate of energy dissipation in the zero viscosity limit, thus violating the well-known dynamics of two-dimensional flow. Further, the experiments show a tendency to equipartition of the kinetic energy of the divergent part of the flow in the inviscid limit, suggesting the possibility of a divergent energy cascade in the physical system, as well as a possible influence of the energy mixing on the process of adjustment toward balanced flow.

Abstract

Two simple numerical models of the shallow-water equations identical in all respects but for their con-servation properties have been tested regarding their internal mixing processes. The experiments show that violation of enstrophy conservation results in a spurious accumulation of rotational energy in the smaller scales, reflected by an unrealistic increase of enstrophy, which ultimately produces a finite rate of energy dissipation in the zero viscosity limit, thus violating the well-known dynamics of two-dimensional flow. Further, the experiments show a tendency to equipartition of the kinetic energy of the divergent part of the flow in the inviscid limit, suggesting the possibility of a divergent energy cascade in the physical system, as well as a possible influence of the energy mixing on the process of adjustment toward balanced flow.

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