1Zel Technologies and University of Colorado, Boulder, CO, USA
2Institute of Applied Physics, Nizhny, Novgorod, Russia
3Department of Physical Oceanography, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Woods Hole, MA, USA
Received: 30 Jun 2010 – Revised: 17 Dec 2010 – Accepted: 18 Jan 2011 – Published: 14 Feb 2011
Abstract. Strongly nonlinear internal waves in a layer with arbitrary stratification are considered in the hydrostatic approximation. It is shown that "simple waves" having a variable vertical structure can emerge from a wide class of initial conditions. The equations describing such waves have been obtained using the isopycnal coordinate as a variable. Emergence of simple waves from an initial Gaussian impulse is numerically investigated for different density profiles, from two- and three-layer structure to the continuous one. Besides the first mode, examples of second- and third-mode simple waves are given.
Citation: Ostrovsky, L. A. and Helfrich, K. R.: Strongly nonlinear, simple internal waves in continuously-stratified, shallow fluids, Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 18, 91-102, doi:10.5194/npg-18-91-2011, 2011.