In this chapter, a collection of “favorite trajectories” from various authors are presented.
While Lagrangian data analysis uses an extensive array of sophisticated tools, including classical statistics, dynamical system theory, stochastic modelling, assimilation techniques, and many others, visual inspection of individual trajectories still plays an important role, providing the first and often fundamental glimpse of the underlying dynamics. Often, for Lagrangian investigators, looking at trajectories gives the first intuition, then leading to the use of sophisticated and appropriate analysis. Trajectories tell the story of the journey of drifters and floats, and these stories are often complex and fascinating.
In the following sections, a number of investigators take us in the various world oceans, including Atlantic, Pacific and regional Seas, from the Poles to the Tropics, telling us the stories of their favorite trajectories and giving us their intuition and physical insights.
Mesoscale eddies in the Red Sea outflow region
In 2001–2002, 50 RAFOS floats were released at the core depth (∼ 650 m) of Red Sea Outflow Water (RSOW) in the Gulf of Aden (northwestern Indian Ocean) as part of the Red Sea Outflow Experiment (REDSOX). The objective was to determine how warm, saline RSOW spreads from its source at the southern end of Bab al Mandeb Strait to the open Indian Ocean. Our hypothesis was that either boundary undercurrents or submesoscale coherent vortices (SCVs like Meddies, but here called “Reddies”) were the main transport mechanisms for RSOW.
Donald Davidson finds folk-psychological explanations anomalous due to the open-ended and constitutive conception of rationality which they employ, and yet monist because they invoke an ontology of only physical events. An eliminative materialist who thinks that the beliefs and desires of folk-psychology are mere pre-scientific fictions cannot accept these claims, but he could accept anomalous monism construed as an analysis, merely, of the ideological and ontological presumptions of folk-psychology. Of course, eliminative materialism is itself only a guess, a marker for material explanations we do not have, but it is made plausible by, inter alia, whatever difficulties we have in interpreting intentional folk-explanations realistically. And surely anomalous monism does require further explanation if it is to be accepted realistically and not dismissed as an analysis of a folk-idiom which is to be construed instrumentally at'best. Some further explanation is needed of how beliefs, desires, etc. can form rational patterns which have ‘no echo in physical theory’ and yet those beliefs, desires etc. be physical events. To this end I propose to graft on to anomalous monism a modest version of functionalism.
At first sight functionalism might seem to support the monism but be antagonistic to the anomalism. For a basic idea of functionalism is that the normative rational patterns of folk–functional explanations are mirrored by purely causal inter-relations between the physical states which realize the beliefs, desires, etc. of a folk-explanation. Hence those rational patterns find not just an ‘echo’ but an exact image in physical theory.
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