Syllabus (.pdf)

Course Focus

Atmospheric dynamics constitutes a branch of the larger field of geophysical fluid dynamics which itself is embedded in the general field of fluid mechanics. Geophysical fluid dynamics aims at understanding the underlying mechanisms of atmospheric and oceanic motion over a vast range of spatial and temporal scales. Although much of the study of geophysical fluid dynamics requires simplifications to the underlying physics, much can be gained by studying such simplified systems, in fact, many of the conclusions drawn from these simplified systems carry-over directly to the real atmosphere/ocean. This course covers the first fundamentals of geophysical fluid dynamics with an emphasis on the atmospheric component.

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W F 9:00-9:50 AM, ATS 101

General Topics Covered

  • General mathematical concepts
  • The Equations of Motion
  • Earth's rotation
  • The Primitive Equations
  • Balanced Motion
  • Rotational Flow
  • Rossby Waves
  • Shallow Water Models
  • Potential Vorticity