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Amala Mahadevan’s lab studies physical processes related to the oceanic carbon cycle, biogeochemical distributions, and the ocean’s role in climate change. Using modeling and the analysis of observational data, the group investigates the implications of ocean processes on the productivity and distribution of phytoplankton, the transport and mixing of properties, and the exchange of heat and freshwater between the surface ocean, deep ocean and atmosphere. Having developed one of the first three-dimensional non-hydrostatic ocean models suited for limited domains, the group uses the model as a research tool for exploring mesoscale and submesoscale phenomena. The Process Study Ocean Model (PSOM) is used to study a number of processes such as the vertical transport of nutrients by frontal and submesoscale processes, the dynamics of the shelfbreak front, heterogeneity in the distributions of various biogeochemical tracers, and the interaction of aquatic vegetation and flow in shallow coastal environments. Data from a number of sources including satellite, in situ ship-based observations, and autonomous observations with ships and gliders are the basis of many of the studies. 

One broad theme of the research is understanding the interactions between physical processes, the autotrophic community and the carbon cycle. Another is the role of the surface oceanic layer in exchanging heat, moisture and gases with the atmosphere and the vast ocean that lies beneath.

Amala Mahadevan

Amala Mahadevan

Senior Scientist
Physical Oceanography
Tel: +1 508 289 3440
amala@whoi.edu
CV

Lab Members

Kathleen Abbott

Kathleen Abbott
Ph.D. Student
MIT/WHOI Joint Program

Roger

Weiguang (Roger) Wu
Ph.D. Student
MIT/WHOI Joint Program

Jing He

Jing He
Ph.D. Student
MIT/WHOI Joint Program

Mara Freilich

Mara Freilich
Ph.D. Student
MIT/WHOI Joint Program

Yue_(Cynthia)_Wu

Yue (Cynthia) Wu
Postdoctoral Investigator

News

Animation of Phytoplankton Blooms

July 7, 2012

An animation based on a three-dimensional model simulation reveals the processes underlying the annual spring phytoplankton blooms in the North Atlantic. This model simulation by Amala Mahadevan (WHOI) is based on a suite of observations made in 2008 by Eric D’Asaro (APL, U. Washington), Craig Lee (APL, U. Washington), and Mary Jane Perry (U. Maine).…

Recent Publications

Derr, N.J., Fronk, D.C., Weber, C.A., Mahadevan, A., Rycroft, C.H. and  L. Mahadevan, Flow-driven branching in a fragile porous medium, 2020, Phys. Rev. Lett. 125 (15), 158002

Mahadevan, A., A. Pascual, D.L. Rudnick, S. Ruiz, J. Tintoré, E. D’Asaro,  Coherent pathways for vertical transport from the surface ocean to interior, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society (2020) doi:10.1175/BAMS-D-19-0305.1.

Jaeger, Gualtiero Spiro,  A.J. Lucas, J.T. Farrar, E. Shroyer, J. Nash, J. MacKinnon, A. Tandon, A. Mahadevan, 2020, Variance of spice in the Bay of Bengal,  J. Phys. Oceanogr.

Omand, Melissa, Rama Govindarajan, Jing He and Amala Mahadevan, A mechanistic model for the sinking flux of particles in the oceans, Scientific Reports, 10.1 (2020): 1-16.

Dever, Mathieu, Mara Freilich, J. Thomas Farrar, Benjamin Hodges, Tom Lanagan and Amala Mahadevan,  EcoCTD for profiling oceanic physical-biological properties from an underway ship, In Press,  J. Oceanic & Atmos. Technology

Jaeger, Gualtiero S.,  A.J. Lucas and Amala Mahadevan, 2020, Formation of Interleaving Layers in the Bay of Bengal, Deep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography 172: 104717