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Andrew Lucas

I study the relationship between physical dynamics in the sea and the character and productivity of the base of the oceanic food web. I use in situ measurement techniques and autonomous vehicles to gather physical and biogeochemical observations of high spatial and temporal resolution. These data allow for quantitative assessment of budgets of physical dynamics (energy, heat, buoyancy fluxes, turbulent dissipation rates) and biogeochemically relevant processes (nutrient and carbon fluxes, transport and mixing). My aim is to elucidate the imprint of the physical nature of the sea on small primary producers at the temporal and spatial scales relevant to the organisms. More broadly, my work establishes the necessary physical framework to assess the impact of projected changes in ocean circulation, wind driven dynamics, and heat content on the base of the ocean ecosystem.

My ongoing projects include 1) continued collaboration with the Ocean Physics Group (OPG) at SIO on the development of the Wirewalker wave powered profiler, 2) studying the evolution and dissipation of the internal tide over the Southern California inner shelf (summer 2013), 3) Air-sea interactions, monsoon prediction, and submesoscale dynamics in the Bay of Bengal (2013-2014), 4) wind-driven dynamics in diurnally variable coastal systems.

I graduated Pomona College in 1998 with a degree in Biology. I spent 18 months in Mar del Plata, Argentina, on a US Fulbright Fellowship, studying physical oceanography, after graduation from college. I received my M.Sc. (2003) and Ph.D. (2009) in Oceanography from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. I was awarded a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship to conducted research in the upwelling zone of the west coast of South Africa, during which time (2010-2011) I lived and worked in Cape Town. I was also a postdoctoral researcher for University of California, Santa Cruz. I returned to SIO as an Assistant Research Oceanographer in the summer of 2012.