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High-Order Multi-Resolution Multi-Dynamics Modeling for the Flow Encountering Abrupt Topography (FLEAT) Initiative

The presence of large gradients often renders the quantitative analysis of dynamical systems challenging, be the analysis theoretical, observational or computational. This is because large gradients commonly lead to strong nonlinearities and to coupling among state variables and parameters. The emphasis of the Flow Encountering Abrupt Topography (FLEAT) initiative is on the effects of large topographic gradients and complex subsurface geometry on major current systems. First, the processes involved in these strong topographic interactions are not yet well known. Their consequences, including alteration of circulation features, spawning of internal waves and vortices, and formation of unstable downslope flows and gravity currents, require novel integrated analyses. Second, major ocean ridges and archipelagos and islands are not properly represented in larger-scale modeling systems, and novel downscaling and two-way nesting schemes need to be utilized, developed and evaluated with real ocean data. This set of research activities is the emphasis of our FLEAT research project.