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Researchers ­nravel Secrets of Hidden Waves

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Internal waves

Satellite image of the South China Sea with colors added to indicate the calculated vertical displacement of ocean layers near 200 meters deep, based on simulated model data and calculations run by Harper Simmons at the University of Alaska at Fairbanks and depicted by a graphics team at the University of Washington. Orange indicates upward movement, and blue indicates downward movement.

Credit: The researchers

Detailed new field studies, laboratory experiments, and simulations of the largest known "internal waves" in the Earth's oceans—phenomena that play a key role in mixing ocean waters, greatly affecting ocean temperatures—provide a comprehensive new view of how these colossal, invisible waves are born, spread, and die off.

From MIT News Office
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