Geostrophic Wind Level

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Geostrophic Wind Level

The lowest level at which the wind becomes geostrophic

in the theory of the Ekman spiral, proportional to
Missing Image:img src="SP7-g_files/geostw.gif" alt="geostrophic wind equation" align="middle"
where v is the kinematic eddy viscosity and Missing Image:img src="SP7-g_files/geostw2.gif" alt="lowercase italic rho" align="middle" the latitude. Also called gradient wind

level. </dd>
In practice it is observed that the geostrophic wind level is between 1.2 and 1.6 kilometers, and it is assumed that this marks the upper limit of frictional influence of the earth's surface. The geostrophic wind level may be considered to be the top of the Ekman layer and planetary boundary layer, i.e., the base of the free atmosphere. [[/a>|/a> ]]


This article is based on NASA's Dictionary of Technical Terms for Aerospace Use