The turbulent dissipation and mixing associated with internal waves form a critical component of ocean physics, setting abyssal stratifications and determining the rate at which the deepest waters of the global overturning circulation rise. The tides and winds each provide around half of the mechanical energy input into the ocean’s interior, however their energy pathways from forcing to dissipation are poorly understood, leading to significant uncertainties in how best to represent internal wave driven mixing in global climate models.
In this talk I will discuss internal tides in the open ocean, and contrast it to the situation at the coast where the presence of a bathymetric boundary enables the existence of coastally trapped waves. Idealized numerical simulations indicate that such waves are generated when the incident wave, scattered wave and topographic wavelength satisfy a triad relation. Such waves may play a role in redistributing energy along the coast, with resulting influence on the distribution of turbulent