Description: The goal of this course is to introduce students to the mathematically rich science of physical oceanography. The course is principally lecture oriented but with some laboratory activities. Lectures will focus on introducing the main concepts of physical oceanography while a limited set of laboratory experiments will reinforce some of the material presented in the lectures. The lectures will discuss and illustrate the role of the oceans in the Earth's climate, the basic equations of motion, boundary conditions, geostrophic flow, planetary boundary layers, barotropic and baroclinic circulation, vorticity, surface gravity waves, inertial motions, and tides. Throughout the lectures, the interplay between observational, theoretical, and modeling approaches to problems in physical oceanography will be highlighted. The laboratory will be divided into three sections: scientific article discussion, problem solving, and computer/wet lab demonstration. Scientific article discussions will focus on a cross-section of seminal papers in physical oceanography.
Prerequisites: Students should have a knowledge of advanced calculus and general physics, or the permission of the instructors.