Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

68 Scopus citations


Mechanism is proposed whereby planetary zonal flows can be generated by the resonant interaction of Rossby wave packets whose amplitudes are slowly varying functions of both space and time. Equations are derived describing the longtime behavior of a resonantly interacting triad. At the first closure certain properties analogous to those already known for discrete waves are deduced. At the second closure, in the particular case when one of the members of the triad is a zonal flow, it is shown that the sideband resonance mechanism can cause energy to be gained or lost by this zonal flow. It is also shown that a single Rossby wave packet can exchange energy with a zonal flow with weak shear.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)255-271
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Fluid Mechanics
Issue numberpt 2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 3 1969
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics

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