Observation and quantification of inertial effects on the drift of floating objects at the ocean surface

Maria Josefina Olascoaga1, Francisco J Beron-Vera1, Gustavo Jorge Goni2, Rick Lumkin3, Philippe Miron4, Nathan F Putman5 and Joaquin A Trinanes6, (1)University of Miami, Miami, FL, United States, (2)NOAA/AOML, Miami, FL, United States, (3)NOAA, AOML, Miami, FL, United States, (4)RSMAS/U. of Miami, Miami, FL, United States, (5)LGL Ecological Research Associates, Inc., Bryan, TX, United States, (6)NOAA Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory, Miami, FL, United States
A series of field experiments consisting in deploying and satellite tracking buoys of varied sizes and buoyancies have been carried out in the North Atlantic to test the importance of inertial effects, i.e., those due to finite size and buoyancy, on their drift. We show that they indeed are important and that a recently proposed Maxey--Riley theory for surface ocean inertial particle dynamics describe them with accuracy.