Ekman layer


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Ekman layer

n.
In a rotating fluid, a layer of relatively uniform fluid between a boundary (such as the surface) and the bulk of the fluid, especially the upper layer of the ocean whose currents are largely driven by the force of wind on the surface.

[After Vagn Walfrid Ekman (1874-1954), Swedish oceanographer.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Ekman layer

(Swedish ˈɛkman)
n
(Physical Geography) the thin top layer of the sea that flows at 90° to the wind direction, discovered by Vagn Walfrid Ekman
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
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References in periodicals archive ?
(2001), during upwelling events the upper 20 m of the water column represent the Ekman layer, the 80-20 m stratum shows a reversal flow, and the 200-80 m stratum is a deep and more stable layer.
In September 1998, velocity profiles showed a southward flow throughout the water column, and a typical structure across shore of an upwelling event composed by three layers, a westward surface layer (Ekman layer, 0-25 m depth), a subsurface eastward layer (25-50 m) and a deep layer (50-200 m) flowing westward (Fig.
The Ekman layer velocity data have shown three types of systematic deviations from the situation described by the classical Ekman theory (Ekman 1905).
Attempts to observe the structure of the Ekman layer in the surface layers of the sea have been successful.
The mean wind speed during the measurement was 2.8 m [s.sup.-1] and the corresponding estimated Ekman layer depth was 2.5 m.