We review the dynamics of stably stratified flows in the regime in which the Froude number is considered small and the Rossby number is of order one or greater. In particular we emphasize the nonpropagating component of the flow field, as opposed to the internal wave component. Examples of such flows range from the later stages of decay of turbulent flows to mesoscale meteorological flows. Results from theoretical analyses, laboratory experiments, and numerical simulations are presented. The limiting form of the equations of motion appears to describe the laboratory experiments and numerical simulations rather well. There are similarities with the dynamics of two-dimensional flows, but three-dimensional effects are clearly important. A number of remaining open issues are discussed.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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