Topological entropy: A lagrangian measure of the state of the free atmosphere

Tímea Haszpra, Tamás Tél

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)


Topological entropy is shown to be a useful characteristic of the state of the free atmosphere. It can be determined as the stretching rate of a line segment of tracer particles in the atmosphere over a time span of about 10 days. Besides case studies, the seasonal distribution of the average topological entropy is determined in several geographical locations. The largest topological entropies appear in the mid- and high latitudes, especially in winter, owing to the greater temperature gradient between the pole and the equator and the more intense stirring and shearing effects of cyclones. The smallest values can be found in the trade wind belt. The local value of the topological entropy is a measure of the chaoticity of the state of the atmosphere and of how rapidly pollutants and contaminants spread from a given location.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4030-4040
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the Atmospheric Sciences
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atmospheric Science

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Topological entropy: A lagrangian measure of the state of the free atmosphere'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this