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Multiscale Modelling of Ocean Circulation

Mr. Dominik Michel(1), Willi Freeden(1) , and Volker Michel(1)

(1) Geomathematics Group, K-Tech, P.O.Box 3049, 67653 Kaiserslautern, Germany


In the future, it will be neccessary to analyse oceanic currents in local environments, for example, the northern Atlantic Ocean for an analysis of the Gulf stream. In the last two decades, spherical spline- and wavelet-techniques have been developed by the Geomathematics Group in Kaiserslautern. For this task, lately applicated space localizing basis functions are of interest. So for an analysis of, e.g. the El Nino phenomena, only oceanic flow in the region around the western coast of South America would be necessary, neglecting all other data material, in particular from the northern Pacific and the Atlantic Ocean. This gives two major advantages over well-known Fourier expansions with globally defined basis functions. Foremost, local variations inflict only changes within small areas, reducing numerical costs and needed observables. This leads straightforward to the second point. Since all real data are error affected, needing only local (and therefore less) observables implies less influence of these errors.

In particular, our wavelet methods provide a multiscale analysis of the given data. Thereby we have at each scale a low-pass-filtered version of our signal. Depending on the details we need locally, we can zoom-in into regions under consideration. Especially high-frequent structures are explicitly observable with these methods.

Within the context of oceanography these methods will be used for a new model of ocean circulation, using the advantages of a local multiscale analysis to gain greater inside into phenomena with small spatial or temporal length. Further, due to the new localizing kernels, greater amounts of data can be handled to obtain new high-precision results.


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Keywords: ESA European Space Agency - Agence spatiale europeenne, observation de la terre, earth observation, satellite remote sensing, teledetection, geophysique, altimetrie, radar, chimique atmospherique, geophysics, altimetry, radar, atmospheric chemistry