isopycnal


Also found in: Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

isopycnal

(ˌaɪsəʊˈpɪknəl) or

isopycnic

n
(Physical Geography) a line on a map connecting points of equal atmospheric density
[C19: from iso- + Greek puknos thick]
References in periodicals archive ?
Stratified lakes and reservoirs can be regarded as three-dimensional, mechanical, viscously damped oscillators characterized by an infinite spectrum of baroclinic (i.e., internal motions in which isopycnal surfaces oscillate) oscillatory natural modes with characteristic periods and spatial structures (Monismith, 1985; Lemmin, et al, 2005; Shimizu, et al, 2008; Valerio, et al, 2012).
They suggested that the trench water is rather freely exchanged by isopycnal mixing with the bottom water overlying the Northwest Pacific abyssal plain.
The derived estimates are applied to evaluate the deviations of isopycnal surfaces from their undisturbed positions under the impact of internal waves (equivalently, the amplitudes of internal waves) and velocity fields in such waves in prospective locations of oil and gas platforms on the shelf of Sakhalin.
Given the isopycnal nature of ocean water movement, a natural oceanic mixing occurs mostly along the potential density surface so that the mixing across the potential density surface is always much weaker than that along the potential density surface.
Because the ocean is made up of many layers of water that are dependent on temperature and salinity, water moves easily along horizontal or isopycnal layers, but mixes only slowly across the layers, known as diapycnal mixing.
The hybrid coordinate in HYCOM is isopycnal in the open, stratified ocean, but smoothly reverts to a terrainfollowing coordinate in shallow coastal regions, NCODA uses the model forecast as a first guess in a multivariate Optimal Interpolation scheme and assimilates available satellite altimeter observations satellite and in situ SST as well as available in situ vertical temperature and salinity profiles from XBTs, ARGO floats and moored buoys.
Figure 2 shows the mean spatial distribution of salinity on the 26.8[sigma][theta] isopycnal surface during 1995-2000.
It has evolved from the Miami Isopycnic Coordinate Ocean Model (MICOM) and is isopycnal in the open stratified ocean but reverts to a terrain-following coordinate in shallow coastal regions, and to z-level coordinates near the surface in the mixed layer.
In the ocean, in or relating to the direction perpendicular to an imaginary surface of uniform density (the isopycnal).