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Testing of kinetic energy backscatter parameterizations in the NEMO ocean model

Pavel A. Perezhogin EMAIL logo


Eddy-permitting numerical ocean models resolve mesoscale turbulence only partly, that leads to underestimation of eddy kinetic energy (EKE). Mesoscale dynamics can be amplified by using kinetic energy backscatter (KEB) parameterizations returning energy from the unresolved scales. We consider two types of KEB: stochastic and negative viscosity ones. The tuning of their amplitudes is based on a local budget of kinetic energy, thus, they are ‘energetically-consistent’ KEBs. In this work, the KEB parameterizations are applied to the NEMO ocean model in Double-Gyre configuration with an eddy-permitting resolution (1/4 degree). To evaluate the results, we compare this model with an eddy-resolving one (1/9 degree). We show that the meridional overturning circulation (MOC), meridional heat flux, and sea surface temperature (SST) can be significantly improved with the KEBs. In addition, a better match has been found between the time power spectra of the eddy-permitting and the eddy-resolving model solutions.

MSC 2010: 76F25; 76F65; 86A05; 60H30


Author would like to thank A. V. Glazunov and N. G. Yakovlev for helpful comments and discussion.

  1. Funding: Analysis of the results and their interpretation were carried out with the financial support of the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (projects 19-35-90023, 18-05-60184). The development of computing technologies was carried out with the financial support of the Russian Ministry of Education and Science (agreement No. 075-15-2019-1624).


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Received: 2020-01-15
Accepted: 2020-01-16
Published Online: 2020-04-23
Published in Print: 2020-04-28

© 2020 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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