The angle of windrows in the ocean

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Faller, Alan J. (2011)

Direct observations of the angle of windrows in the ocean with respect to the direction of the wind within a few feet of the surface show that there is a systematic deflection of the row orientation to the right of the wind direction. The average angle of the data is 13 degrees with a standard error of estimate of 2.0 degrees. Observations were obtained from small boats or by measurements from aerial photographs of the angle between the wind and windrows as indicated by smoke flares and material in the water. This systematic angle and earlier measurements of row spacing as a function of wind speed are interpreted as evidence that the Langmuir circulations in the ocean are produced by shear-flow instability in the Ekman boundary layer.DOI: 10.1111/j.2153-3490.1964.tb00173.x
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