MTMW20-Global Circulation of the Atmosphere & Ocean

Module Provider: Meteorology
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Level:7
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Pre-requisites:
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Co-requisites: MTMW11 Fluid Dynamics of the Atmosphere and Oceans
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2017/8

Module Convenor: Dr David Brayshaw

Email: d.j.brayshaw@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:
This module provides an overview of the main observed large scale Features of the atmospheric and oceanic circulations, and of the simple dynamical theories rationalising them.

Aims:
To develop a knowledge and understanding of the large-scale circulation of the atmosphere and ocean.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of this module the student should be able to:



• Describe and quantify aspects of the large-scale circulation of the atmosphere and ocean;



• Demonstrate understanding of relevant theoretical concepts and models;



• Apply theoretical and modelling tools to analyse and physially interpret the behaviour of key aspects of the large scale atmospheric and ocean circulation.


Additional outcomes:

Outline content:

1 - Introduction to Planet Earth Basic properties and circulation drivers (radiation, rotation). Basic equations (momentum/vorticity, thermodynamic, mass conservation). Composition and equations of state. An overview of observes structure;



2 - Energy and angular momentum budgets Budgets and fluxes/transports. Decomposing fluxes: zonal and time averaging. Energy: thermodynamic energy equation and adiabatic conservation properties, budgets and fluxes. Angular momentum: budgets and fluxes. Applications: Hadley Cell in the atmosphere; Thermohaline circulation of the oceans. Other budgets;



3 - Ekman transports and wind driven ocean circulation Ekman transports and pumping. Sverdrup balance. A simple model of the wind driven ocean circulation and its extensions;



4 - Rossby waves Contrasting physical arguments for westward movement. Ocean Rossby waves. Atmospheric barotropic Rossby waves. Stationary Rossby waves in the atmosphere;



5 - Extratropical storm tracks Observation. Why do storm tracks exist? The meridonial circulation and the maintenance of the extra-tropical surface westerlies. Climate variability and change.


Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

Lectures and problem classes.



Reading lists for meteorology modules are available here https://reading.rl.talis.com/departments/mps_met.htmlhttps://reading.rl.talis.com/departments/mps_met.html


Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 15
Seminars 3
Guided independent study 82
       
Total hours by term 100.00
       
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 10
Class test administered by School 90

Other information on summative assessment:

Formative assessment methods:
One non-assessed problem sheet to be completed during the module.

Penalties for late submission:

Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy. Please refer to page 5 of the Postgraduate Guide to Assessment for further information: http://www.reading.ac.uk/internal/exams/student/exa-guidePG.aspx
Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy. Please refer to page 5 of the Postgraduate Guide to Assessment for further information: http://www.reading.ac.uk/internal/exams/student/exa-guidePG.aspx

Length of examination:
2 hour exam. Answer Question 1 and either Question 2 or 3.

Requirements for a pass:
50% overall.

Reassessment arrangements:
For candidates who have failed, an opportunity to take a resit examination will be provided within the lifetime of the course.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

1) Required text books: 2) Specialist equipment or materials: 3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear: 4) Printing and binding: 5) Computers and devices with a particular specification: 6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:


Last updated: 31 March 2017

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