Laboratory experiments and their interpretation were supported by the National Science Foundation under Grants OCE-0351892 and OCE-0351905. Numerical modeling work was supported in part by the Office of Naval Research under Grant N00014-01-1-0984 and by the National Science Foundation under Grant OCE-0623193. Jim Fontaine provided engineering assistance for the laboratory experiments. Chris Luebke assisted with the initial design and fabrication of the laboratory mixers. Geoff Cowles assisted with the calculation of seminumerical solutions for the continuously stratified solutions from the published literature. We also thank two anonymous reviewers for helpful suggestions and feedback.
Alford, M. A., and R. Pinkel, 2000: Observations of overturning in the thermocline: The context of ocean mixing. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 30, 805–832.
Australian Scientific Instruments, cited 2010, The ANU rotating table. Australian National University Research School of Earth Sciences. [Available online at http://rses.anu.edu.au/gfd/index.php?p=table.]
Bartello, P., 1995: Geostrophic adjustment and inverse cascades in rotating stratified turbulence. J. Atmos. Sci., 52, 4410–4428.
Beckers, M., H. Clercx, G. van Heijst, and R. Verzicco, 2003: Evolution and instability of monopolar vortices in a stratified fluid. Phys. Fluids, 15, 1033–1045.
Cenedese, C., J. Whitehead, T. Ascarelli, and M. Ohiwa, 2004: A dense current flowing down a sloping bottom in a rotating fluid. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 34, 188–203.
Cushman-Roisin, B., 1987: Exact analytical solutions for elliptical vortices of the shallow-water equations. Tellus, 39A, 235–244.
De Silva, I., and H. Fernando, 1998: Experiments on collapsing turbulent regions in stratified fluids. J. Fluid Mech., 358, 29–60.
Dewar, W., and P. Killworth, 1990: On the cylinder collapse problem, mixing, and the merger of isolated eddies. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 20, 1563–1575.
Dotsenko, S., and A. Rubino, 2006: Analytical solutions for circular stratified eddies of the reduced-gravity shallow-water equations. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 36, 1693–1702.
Fortuin, J., 1960: Theory and application of two supplementary methods of constructing density gradient columns. J. Polym. Sci., 44, 505–515.
Geisler, J., 1970: Linear theory of the response of a two layer ocean to a moving hurricane. Geophys. Astrophys. Fluid Dyn., 1, 249–272.
Grant, H. L., A. Moilliet, and W. M. Vogel, 1968: Some observations of the occurrence of turbulence in and above the thermocline. J. Fluid Mech., 34, 443–448.
Gregg, M., E. D’Asaro, T. Shay, and N. Larson, 1986: Observations of persistent mixing and near-inertial internal waves. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 16, 856–885.
Hebert, D., N. Oakey, and B. Ruddick, 1990: Evolution of a Mediterranean salt lens: Scalar properties. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 20, 1468–1483.
Hedstrom, K., and L. Armi, 1988: An experimental study of homogeneous lenses in a rotating, stratified fluid. J. Fluid Mech., 191, 535–556.
Hermann, A., and W. Owens, 1993: Energetics of gravitational adjustment for mesoscale chimneys. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 23, 346–371.
Kloosterziel, R., and G. Carnevale, 1999: On the evolution and saturation of instabilities of two-dimensional isolated circular vortices. J. Fluid Mech., 388, 217–257.
Kunze, E., 2001: Waves: Vortical mode. Encyclopedia of Ocean Sciences, S. T. J. Steele and K. Turekian, Eds., Academic Press, 3174–3178.
Kunze, E., and T. Sanford, 1993: Submesoscale dynamics near a seamount. Part I: Measurements of Ertel vorticity. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 23, 2567–2601.
Lelong, M., and M. Sundermeyer, 2005: Geostrophic adjustment of an isolated diapycnal mixing event and its implications for small-scale lateral dispersion. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 35, 2352–2367.
Marshall, J., A. Nurser, and R. Williams, 1993: Inferring the subduction rate and period over the North Atlantic. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 23, 1315–1329.
Oakey, N. S., and B. J. W. Greenan, 2004: Mixing in a coastal environment: 2. A view from microstructure measurements. J. Geophys. Res., 109, C10014, doi:10.1029/2003JC002193.
Polzin, K. L., E. Kunze, J. M. Toole, and R. W. Schmitt, 2003: The partition of finescale energy into internal waves and subinertial motions. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 33, 234–248.
Reznik, G., V. Zeitlin, and M. Ben Jelloul, 2001: Nonlinear theory of geostrophic adjustment. Part 1. Rotating shallow-water model. J. Fluid Mech., 445, 93–120.
Robinson, A., M. Spall, and N. Pinardi, 1988: Gulf Stream simulations and the dynamics of ring and meander processes. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 18, 1811–1854.
Rossby, C., 1937: On the mutual adjustment of pressure and velocity distributions in certain simple current systems. J. Mar. Res., 1, 15–28.
Rossby, C., 1938: On the mutual adjustment of pressure and velocity distribution in certain simple current systems. J. Mar. Res., 1, 239–263.
Rubino, A., and P. Brandt, 2003: Warm-core eddies studied by laboratory experiments and numerical modeling. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 33, 431–435.
Rubino, A., K. Hessner, and P. Brandt, 2002: Decay of stable warm-core eddies in a layered frontal model. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 32, 188–201.
Rubino, A., A. Androssov, and S. Dotsenko, 2007: Intrinsic dynamics and long-term evolution of a convectively generated oceanic vortex in the Greenland Sea. Geophys. Res. Lett., 34, L16607, doi:10.1029/2007GL030634.
Spall, M., 1995: Frontogenesis, subduction, and cross-front exchange at upper ocean fronts. J. Geophys. Res., 100 C2, 2543–2557.
Stegner, A., P. Bouruet-Aubertot, and T. Pichon, 2004: Nonlinear adjustment of density fronts. Part 1. The Rossby scenario and the experimental reality. J. Fluid Mech., 502, 335–360.
Stommel, H., 1979: Determination of water mass properties of water pumped down from the Ekman layer to the geostrophic flow below. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 76, 3051–3055.
Sundermeyer, M. A., and M.-P. Lelong, 2005: Numerical simulations of lateral dispersion by the relaxation of diapycnal mixing events. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 35, 2368–2386.
Sundermeyer, M. A., J. R. Ledwell, N. S. Oakey, and B. J. W. Greenan, 2005: Stirring by small-scale vortices caused by patchy mixing. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 35, 1245–1262.
Whitehead, J., J. Marshall, and G. Hufford, 1996: Localized convection in rotating stratified fluid. J. Geophys. Res., 101, 25 705–25 722.
Winters, K. B., J. A. MacKinnon, and B. Mills, 2004: A spectral model for processes studies of rotating, density stratified flows. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 21, 69–94.