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Mediterranean (water) Eddy. A large eddy originating from the outflow of the Mediterranean Sea which was found near the Bahamas 1000m below the ocean surface in 1976. Subsequently, meddies were found to be common in the eastern Atlantic (see below).

Here are some questions:

For experts in hydrodynamics and non-equilibrium thermodynamics: what keeps this dissipative structure going?

For meteorologists and planetologists: is this a useful analogy for the Great Red Spot on Jupiter?

Sources:

Mark D. Prater and H. Thomas Rossby (both at School of Oceanography and Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98105) , "The Double Irony of the Meddy"

The double irony lies in the fact that the original Bahamas meddy led to the discovery that meddies are in fact quite common in the eastern Atlantic. But as we learned more about them, we began to harbor doubts that the Bahamas meddy could have originated there. This doubt led us to hypothesize instead that the meddy originated in the northwestern part of the North Atlantic and traveled south and west along the North American continent for 4,000km.

Mark D. Prater and Thomas B. Sanford, "A Meddy off Cape St. Vincent"

Claudia Cenedese (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution) , "Meddy Collision With Topography", ORAL session, Monday morning, November 22 (no year given!)

Shipboard observations indicated that, in the North Atlantic, Meddies propagate southwestward and generally interact with major seamounts. The result is either major disruption of the Meddies (strong interaction) or a change in their propagation direction (weak interaction).

Mark D. Prater and Thomas B. Sanford, "Potential Vorticity Connection between a Gulf of Cadiz Meddy and the Mediterranean Outflow"

Anticyclonic eddies of Mediterranean water found in the North Atlantic (Meddies) contain anomalously low values of Ertel's potential vorticity.

I found all the above references online, but none of them gives a date of publication.

(I learned this word from my Page-A-Day calendar).

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