Michael R. Cox

michael.cox [at] ed.ac.uk

I am a PhD student in the School of Mathematics at the University of Edinburgh, funded by MAC-MIGS. I work with Jacques Vanneste (UoE) and Hossein Kafiabad (Durham University) on problems in geophysical fluid dynamics. I studied theoretical physics and applied mathematics at the University of Birmingham, completing my dissertation in quantum field theory under the supervision of Curt von Keyserlingk.

Research interests

Motivated by a concern for the changing climate, my research focuses on the interaction of waves and vortices in the atmosphere and ocean. I enjoy working by hand, primarily using perturbation theory and asymptotic methods.

I have been looking at the scattering of inertia-gravity waves by slowly-varying vortical flow. We have found that the slow time dependence of the flow broadens the wave energy spectrum, as summarised in my recent talk as part of the TRR 181 seminar series and our recently published paper.

I’m also interested in wave scattering by other inhomogeneities, such as topography, and the interaction of internal tides and eddies in the ocean.


Cox, M., Kafiabad, H., & Vanneste, J. (2023). Inertia-gravity-wave diffusion by geostrophic turbulence: the impact of flow time dependence. Journal of Fluid Mechanics, 958, A21. doi:10.1017/jfm.2023.83

Other interests

To complement my ocean studies, I like to swim in the sea.