Scientists observe near-inertial wave trapped in Gulf Stream eddy



During a research cruise in September 2009, Joyce et al. detected for the first time the existence of a near-inertial wave trapped within most of a 90 kilometer-diameter warm-core eddy in the Gulf Stream. Just as oceanic gravitational waves are driven by the counterbalancing forces of gravity and buoyancy, inertial waves are driven by the wind and the inertial Coriolis force. The downward propagating wave that the authors detected was bounded by the clockwise-rotating eddy.