Ekman Layers: Introduction

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In regions where the atmosphere ‘rubs’ against the surface of the earth, frictional effects become important and play a role in the balance of forces. The boundary layer, sandwiched between the lower surface and the free atmosphere above, is known as the Ekman layer, after Vagn Ekman, a Swedish oceanographer. In this project we study the effects of friction on large-scale circulation using atmospheric data and tank experiments.