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Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 6176045, 4 pages
Research Article

A Gyrostatic Low-Order Model for the El Ñino-Southern Oscillation

1Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907, USA
2Department of Statistics, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Alexander Gluhovsky

Received 30 July 2016; Accepted 13 December 2016; Published 15 January 2017

Academic Editor: Dimitri Volchenkov

Copyright © 2017 Alexander Gluhovsky. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The paper demonstrates that, similar to other important models of atmospheric phenomena, beginning with the celebrated Lorenz model of the Rayleigh-Bénard convection, the Vallis low-order model (LOM) of the El Ñino-Southern Oscillation admits a gyrostatic form and discusses how gyrostatic LOMs may offer a general framework for deriving effective physically sound models for atmospheric dynamics and time series analysis. Any such model has a quadratic integral of motion (interpreted as some form of energy), which eliminates unphysical behaviors that have often plagued atmospheric LOMs and paves way for developing Hamiltonian LOMs. Restricting LOMs to a gyrostatic form also helps to design LOMs of optimum size and provides a modular construction of LOMs using gyrostats as elementary building blocks.