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David A. Schecter

proportional to Fr 4 Ω in the regime where Fr ≪ 1. This result was later generalized by Plougonven and Zeitlin (2002) to “pancake” vortices in a continuously stratified fluid. It stands to reason that an atmospheric vortex at small Froude number would hardly feel the effects of radiation. Nevertheless, mesoscale cyclones such as hurricanes and rotational thunderstorms ( Fig. 1 ) can penetrate the “superspin” parameter regime, where both the Rossby and Froude numbers exceed unity. Recent numerical studies

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Y. D. Afanasyev, P. B. Rhines, and E. G. Lindahl

number. The curvature field can be estimated from the geostrophic velocity field in the first approximation. The gradient wind velocity is then found from (2.5) in the form Since the measurements of velocity are based on the signature of motions at the surface of fluid, it is important to show that surface tension effects are not important. Consider a perturbation of the surface of height η and of horizontal scale L . The hydrostatic pressure due to the surface elevation is ρgη , while the

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