Professor Ross Griffiths

Profile

Biography

After completing a PhD in geophysical fluid dynamics at RSES, ANU, in 1979 (working on double-diffusive convection with Professor J.S. Turner, FRS) I spend 3 years as a Postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, University of Cambridge, UK, where my research focused on laboratory experiments with rotating flows and the instability of ocean currents. I then spent a year in France as a Research Associate in the Institute of Mechanics, University of Grenoble and CNRS. In 1983 I moved to RSES, ANU as a Research Fellow and in 1986 I joined the tenured faculty there, becoming a full Professor in 1999.

I was elected Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science in 2001, Fellow of the American Geophysical Union in 2001, Inaugual Fellow of the Australasian Fluid Mechanics Society in 2011, and Fellow of the Australian Institute of Physics in 1991. I was awarded the Centenary Medal for services to science in Australia in 2001, a Japan Society for the promotion of Science Invitation Fellowship in 1997, the Priestley Medal of the Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society in 1991, and a Postdoctoral Fellowship for the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Summer Program, by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute in 1980. I proposed, designed and managed construction of a new building housing the ANU's GFD laboratory and environmental isotope geochemistry facilities, formally opened in 2000. I was Interim Director of the Research School of Earth Sciences, ANU, for 6 months in 2006 and head of the Earth Physics section of the School 2006-2010.

I am an Associate Editor of the Journal of Fluid Mechanics, which is published by Cambridge University Press and one of the most respected research journals in the field. I encourage researchers to submit research articles on original work of interest in any area of fluid mechanics, and particularly in geophysical fluid dynamics. You can submit articles to me or any of the Associate Editors online through ScholarOne at http://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/jfm.

Research

Research interests

My present work concerns the fundament physics of convection, along with its implications for the dynamics of the ocean overturning circulation, which contributes to transport of heat from low to high latitudes in the earth's climate system and is largely responsible for setting the deep ocean stratification. I am also exploring turbulent mixing in various situations, including how small-scale turbulent mixing affects the large-scale ocean circulation. These questions are being addressed through simple theoretical models, laboratory and computational modelling, and collaboration with ocean modelling efforts.

My research has included a wide range of geophysical and environmental fluid dynamics, all involving experimental and theoretical studies of fluid flows relevant to: 1. modelling of ocean processes (e.g. ocean currents, fronts, convection and turbulent mixing); 
2. modelling of convection in the Earth's mantle (e.g. upwelling plumes, sinking slabs and 'rollback' subduction); and 
3. modelling of volcanic processes (particularly coupled flow, cooling and solidification). Common threads include the fundamental processes of turbulent mixing, thermal convection, multi-component convection, solidification, instability in density-stratified flows, and rotating flows. With expert technical assistance I developed a rotating table design for laboratory experiments and two of these

 

tables are in operation in the geophysical fluid dynamics laboratory at ANU. I also proposed, designed and managed construction of the ANU's GFD laboratory, which was formally opened in 2000.

I am an Associate Editor of the Journal of Fluid Mechanics, published by Cambridge University Press and one of the most respected research journals in the field. I encourage researchers to submit research articles on original work of interest in any area of fluid mechanics, and particularly in geophysical fluid dynamics. You can submit articles to me or any of the Associate Editors online through ScholarOne at http://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/jfm.

Publications

20 selected publications – Professor ROSS W. GRIFFITHS  (1981 - 2013)

For a full list of publications, see my ResearcherID page (link to http://www.researcherid.com/rid/E-6121-2010)

• Griffiths, R.W. and Linden, P.F.  The stability of vortices in a rotating stratified fluid.  J. Fluid Mech., 105, 283-316 (1981)

• Griffiths, R.W. and Linden, P.F.  The stability of buoyancy driven coastal currents.  Dyn. Atmos. Oceans, 5, 281-306 (1981).

• Griffiths, R.W., Killworth, P.D. and Stern, M.E.  Ageostrophic instability of ocean currents.  J. Fluid Mech., 117, 343-377 (1982).

• Griffiths, R.W.  Gravity currents in rotating systems.  Ann. Rev. Fluid Mech., 18, 59-89 (1986).

• Griffiths, R.W. Thermals in extremely viscous fluids, including the effects of temperature dependent viscosity.  J. Fluid Mech., 166, 115-138 (1986).

• Griffiths, R.W. and Hopfinger, E.J.  Coalescing of geostrophic vortices.  J. Fluid Mech., 178, 73-97 (1987).

• Campbell, I.H., Griffiths, R.W. and Hill, R.I.  Melting in an Archaean mantle plume:  heads its basalts, tails its komatiites.  Nature, 339, 697-699 (1989).

• Griffiths, R.W. and Campbell, I.H.  Stirring and structure in mantle starting plumes.  Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. 99, 66-78 (1990).

• Campbell, I.H. and Griffiths, R.W.  Implications of mantle plume structure for the evolution of flood basalts.  Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. 99, 79-93 (1990).

• Fink, J.H. and Griffiths, R.W.  Radial spreading of viscous gravity currents with solidifying crust.  J. Fluid Mech. 221, 485-509 (1990).

• Griffiths, R.W. and Fink, J.H.  Effects of surface cooling on the advance of lava flows and domes.  J. Fluid Mech., 252, 667-702 (1993).

• Griffiths, R.W. The dynamics of lava flows. Ann. Rev. Fluid Mech., 32, 479-520 (2000).

• Kincaid, C. and Griffiths, R.W. Laboratory models of the thermal evolution of the mantle during rollback subduction.  Nature, 425, 58-62 (2003).

• Mullarney, J.C., Griffiths, R.W. and Hughes, G.O. Convection driven by differential heating at a horizontal boundary.  J. Fluid Mech., 516, 181–209 (2004).

• Hughes, G.O. and Griffiths, R.W. A simple convective model of the global overturning circulation, including effects of entrainment into sinking regions. Ocean Modelling, 12, 46–79 (2006).

• Hughes, G.O. and Griffiths, R.W.  Horizontal convection. Annu. Rev. Fluid Mech. 40, 185-208 (2008).

• Hughes, G.O., Hogg, A.Mc. and Griffiths, R.W.  Available potential energy and irreversible mixing in the meridional overturning circulation. J. Phys. Oceanography, 39, 3130-3146, doi:10.1175/2009JPO4162.1 (2009).

• Stewart, K.D., Griffiths, R.W and Hughes, G.O.  The Role of Turbulent Mixing in an Overturning Circulation Maintained by Surface Buoyancy Forcing. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 42, 1907-1922. (doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-11-0242.1) (2012).

• Gayen, B., Griffiths R.W., Hughes, G.O. and Saenz, J.A. Energetics of horizontal convection. J. Fluid Mech., 716, R10, doi:10.1017/jfm.2012.592 (2013).

• Kincaid, C., Druken, K. A., Griffiths, R.W. and Stegman, D.R. Bifurcation of the Yellowstone plume driven by subduction-induced mantle flow. Nature Geoscience, 6, 395-399, doi:10.1038/Ngeo1774 (2013).

Updated:  28 November 2014/Responsible Officer:  RSES Webmaster/Page Contact:  RSES Webmaster