Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 19 Issue 03

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Volume 19, No. 3
Pages 151 - 153

BOOK REVIEW • The Turbulent Ocean

William D. Smyth
First Paragraph

Ocean circulation is often described in terms of relatively simple, quasi-steady current structures, the largest-scale example being the global “conveyer belt.” In most measurements, however, such quasi-steady circulations are all but overwhelmed by motions that vary chaotically over a broad range of spatial and temporal scales. Besides complicating attempts to measure the conveyer belt, these chaotic motions transport heat, salt, chemicals, pollutants, and biota, and provide both propulsion and braking for larger-scale flows, including the conveyer belt itself. This chaotic aspect of ocean circulation is the subject of S.A. Thorpe’s new monograph, The Turbulent Ocean.


Smyth, W.D. 2006. Review of The Turbulent Ocean, by S.A. Thorpe. Oceanography 19(3):151–153, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2006.58.