Surface boundary layer turbulence in CBLAST
Tutbulence in the ocean's surface boundary layer is affected both by processes in common
with turbulence in rigid boundary layers and by processes caused by the presence of
surface gravity waves. During the Coupled Boundary Layers and Air-Sea Transfer project
measurements were made of turbulent quantities on both sides of the air-sea interface.
Working with John Trowbridge, Al Plueddemann, and Gene Terray, I developed a method
to measure turbulent fluxes of heat and momentum as well as
well as turbulent kinetic energy and the spatial scales of flux-carrying and
These observations allowed examination of the effects of surface
gravity waves on the surface boundary layer turbulence. We found that relatively simple
models seem to do a good job of explaining the turbulence energetics and fluxes, but that
many details of these models are still uncertain. Results of the turbulent flux study
are published in Gerbi et al., 2008
and results of the turbulent kinetic energy study are published in
Gerbi et al., 2009.
Both are published in the Journal of Physical Oceanography.
My coauthors and I have made public the estimates of many of the turbulent quantities in these
papers. The data are available here and at
Data in MATLAB and ASCII forms:
MATLAB script to plot several figures in the turbulent kinetic energy paper:
Description of the data: