A BAROCLINIC atmosphere in which the wind direction does not change along the vertical, defined by the relations: is the average wind in a layer with vanishing boundary values of the vertical velocity ωp = dp/dt, has been named1 ‘equivalent-barotropic’ because the divergence vanishes at a level n defined by: Consequently the vorticity equation, which in a consistent geostropic form can be written: takes at the level n the barotropic form: It is clear that together with the geostrophic assumption equation (1) implies that: These relations have been used2 to determine an average vertical velocity field for the equivalent-barotropic atmosphere. We wish to point out here that they also imply the existence of a realistic field of diabatic heating and cooling in the equivalent-barotropic atmosphere.
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Charney, J. G., Fjørtoft, R., and von Neumann, J., Tellus, 2, 237 (1950).
Jenssen, D., and Radok, U., Paper No. 10/2, Seminar of Rain, (Australian Bur. Meteorol., 1960).
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JENSSEN, D., RADOK, U. Diabatic Heating and Cooling in the Equivalent-barotropic Atmosphere. Nature 202, 1104–1105 (1964). https://doi.org/10.1038/2021104a0
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