Oregon State University

College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences

Directory of People

Johannes Becherer

Research Associate (Postdoc)
Discipline: Physics of Oceans and Atmospheres
Office: Burt 432
Email: jbechere@coas.oregonstate.edu


  • turbulent mixing
  • tidal channel flows
  • estuarine circulation
  • curved flows
  • buoyancy driven flows
  • boundary mixing
  • mixing asymmetries
  • estuarine sediment dynamics
  • large scale internal waves

Research Interests

Currently, I am investigating turbulent mixing at the Equator  as a member of the Ocean Mixing Group, working on
data reduction stratigies to enable long term mixing monitoring based on satelite comunication.

Furthermore, I am working in the Inner Shelf Project,  with the goal to understand the transport mechanisms and dynamical processes that interlink the surf zone and the open ocean.

During my first PostDoc, I was working on morphologic modelling of the Wadden Sea, developing code and conducting expensive numerical model simulations, using the super computer infrastructure at the HLRN in Germany.

During my PhD, I studied estuarine circulation as a major driver for sediment transport into the Wadden Sea. Based on observational data, I was able to point out the dynamical importance of lateral circulation. With the help of a newly developed mathematical frame work, I discovered a characteristic dynamical feedback between centrifugal forcing and baroclinic pressure gradient. Furthermore, I was able to show that this feedback is the major control of vertical stratification and along channel exchange flow in the Wadden Sea. In addition, I developed an idealized model, which I used for a parameter study, to point out the global relevance of the newly discovered effect.

During my master thesis I was investigating boundary mixing in lakes, in detail large scale internal waves (seiches), bottom boundary layer stratification, mixing and turbulence. Scince my thesis was a process-oriented modeling study based on model data, I learned how to setup and apply 3D-circulation models. Understanding the principles of state of the art turbulence closure models and there application was part of my thesis as well.


11 Jul 2014       PhD in physical oceanography (Dr. rer. nat.), University of Rostock

  • Title: Estuarine Circulation in well-mixed tidal inlets
  • Supervisor: Hans Burchard

Feb-Apr 2013    Visiting Scholar at the University of California Berkeley
Nov 2011           Visiting Scholar at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

2010-2013        PhD-studies, Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemüde

22 Feb 2010     Master of Science (Dipl. phys.), University of Rostock

  • Title: The Effect of Shear-Induced Bottom Boundary Layer Stratification on Diapycnal Mixing: A Modeling Study
  • Supervisor: Lars Umlauf

2003-2010        Studying physics, University of Rostock


Becherer,  J., G. Flöser, L. Umlauf, and H. Burchard (2016),   Estuarine Circulation vs Tidal Pumping:
Sediment Transport in a Well-Mixed Tidal Inlet, J. Geophys. Res, 

Purkiani, K., J. Becherer, K. Klingbeil, and H. Burchard (2016),   Wind-induced variability of estuarine circulation in a tidally energetic inlet with curvature, J. Geophys. Res

Becherer, J., M. T. Stacey, L. Umlauf, and H. Burchard (2015), Lateral circulation generates flood tide stratification and estuarine exchange flow in a curved tidal inlet., J. Phys. Oceanogr., 45, 638–656, doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-14-0001.1

Purkiani, K., J. Becherer, G. Flöser, U. Gräwe, V. Mohrholz, H. M. Schuttelaars, and H. Burchard (2015), Numerical analysis of stratification and destratification processes in a tidally energetic inlet with an ebb tidal delta, J. Geophys. Res. Oceans, 120, 225243, doi:10.1002/2014JC010325.

Becherer, J., H. Burchard, G. Flöser, V. Mohrholz, and L. Umlauf (2011), Evidence of tidal straining in well-mixed channel flow from micro-structure observations, Geophys. Res. Lett., 38, L17611, doi:10.1029/2011GL049005.

Becherer, J. K., and L. Umlauf (2011), Boundary mixing in lakes: 1. Modeling the effect of shear-induced convection, J. Geophys. Res., 116, C10017, doi:10.1029/2011JC007119.

Lorrai, C., L. Umlauf, J. K. Becherer, A. Lorke, and A. Wüest (2011), Boundary mixing in lakes: 2. Combined effects of shear- and convectively induced turbulence on basin-scale mixing, J. Geophys. Res., 116, C10018, doi:10.1029/2011JC007121.

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