Inertia wave

From Glossary of Meteorology



inertia wave

  1. Any wave motion in which no form of energy other than kinetic energy is present.

    In this general sense, Helmholtz waves, barotropic disturbances, Rossby waves, etc., are inertia waves.

  2. More restrictedly, a wave motion in which the source of kinetic energy of the disturbance is the rotation of the fluid about some given axis.

    In the atmosphere a westerly wind system is such a source, the inertia waves here being, in general, stable. A similar analysis has been applied to smaller vortices, such as the hurricane.
    See inertial instability