von Karman vortex street

September 14th, 2006 |

GOES-11 visible image
GOES-11 visible imagery (above) revealed a nice example of a von Karman vortex street downwind of Guadalupe Island (located off the west coast of Baja California: MODIS true color image). Guadalupe Island has a maximum elevation of about 1.3 km, which was high enough to act as a barrier to the northwesterly boundary layer wind flow; the resulting vortex pattern is apparent in the marine stratoculumus field. A QuickTime animation shows the evolution of the individual vortex features — note that some vortex circulations are cyclonic, while others are anticyclonic.