Miles Sundermeyer


Miles Sundermeyer


SMAST / Estuarine & Ocean Sciences

Research Website




School for Marine Science & Technology West, New Bedford 110A


1991University of CaliforniaB.A.
1995Massachusetts Institute of TechnologySc.M.
1998Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyPh.D




Online and Continuing Education Courses

Earth's Climate as a Dynamic System. Topics include: Observation and Analysis Tools; Radiation, Heat and Water budget; Atmospheric Circulation; Atmosphere-Ocean Relationships; Natural and Anthropogenic Drivers of Climate Change; Paleaoclimatic investigations to Future climate projection; Human and Ecosystem Vulnerabilities; Climate Change Mitigation and Energy; Human Needs, Actions and Public Policy; Climate Studies as a Scientific Endeavor in a Changing Society.


Research activities

  • Collaborative Research: LIDAR Studies of Lateral Dispersion in the Seasonal Pycnocline
  • LIDAR and Numerical Modeling Studies of Small-Scale Lateral Dispersion in the Ocean
  • High-resolution mapping of dye release experiments using airborne LIDAR
  • Laboratory studies of stirring by small-scale geostrophic motions
  • Numerical simulations of stirring by the relaxation of diapycnal mixing events


Research awards

  • $ 3,348 awarded by Veolia North America for Nutrient Analysis on Sample from Brockton WWTP
  • $ 5,120 awarded by Westport Watershed Alliance for WRWA Pond Water Quality Sample Analysis
  • $ 2,800 awarded by Town of Mashpee for Mashpee Ashumet Nutrient Analyses
  • $ 300,000 awarded by Intellisense Systems, Inc. for Development of the Submarine Active Meteorological Sensor (SAMS)
  • $ 495,095 awarded by Office of Naval Research for UMassD MUST III: Detection, Characterization and Validation in Coastal Environments and of the Marine Wave Boundary Layer using Coordinated Airborne UAVs and Underwater AUVs


Research interests

  • Small-scale vertical and horizontal mixing processes
  • Dye release and Lagrangian drifter studies
  • Numerical modeling of two- and three-dimensional turbulent flows
  • Numerical modeling of physical and biological interactions

Select publications

  • Brunner-Suzuki, A.-M.E.G, M.A. Sundermeyer, M.P. Lelong (2014).
    The vortical mode, internal waves, and inverse energy cascade
    Journal of Physical Oceanography
  • Radlinski, M. K., M. A. Sundermeyer, J. J. Bisagni, and S. X. Cadrin (2013).
    Spatial and temporal distribution of Atlantic mackerel, Scomber scombrus, along the northeast coast of the United States
    ICES Journal of Marine Science, 70(6), 1151-1161.
  • Brunner-Suzuki, A-M. E. G., M. A. Sundermeyer, and M.P. Lelong (2012).
    Vortex stability in a large-scale internal wave shear
    Journal of Physical Oceanography, 42, 1668-1683.

Dr. Sundermeyer earned his B.A. in 1991 from the University of California Santa Cruz with a double major in Mathematics and Physics. He earned his Ph.D. in 1998 from the MIT/WHOI Joint Program in Physical Oceanography, where he studied processes controlling lateral dispersion in the ocean. Following his PhD, he worked for two years as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center for Marine Science and Technology at UMass Dartmouth performing numerical modeling related to fish stock assessment, before signing on as Faculty in 2001. With now more than 25 years’ experience studying problems relating to ocean mixing, Dr. Sundermeyer’s primary ongoing research interests include vertical and horizontal mixing processes, dye release and Lagrangian drifter studies, remote and autonomous sensing, numerical modeling of two- and three-dimensional turbulent flows, and numerical modeling of physical and biological interactions. His research combines observations with idealized analytical and numerical models to test hypotheses about specific physical oceanographic processes. To date he has spent more than 180 days at sea, with field observations serving as the foundation of his work. He then uses theoretical, numerical, and laboratory studies to understand the underlying physical processes that control ocean mixing. Dr. Sundermeyer has published more than 25 peer reviewed publications, and has authored/co-authored more than 75 conference presentations. As a Professor, he has advised or co-advised 10 MS students, and 6 PhD students, and served as an academic/thesis committee member for an additional 8 MS and 6 PhD students. He currently also serves as Graduate Program Director at the School for Marine Science and Technology / UMass Intercampus Marine Science program, and is also a long-time Guest/Visiting investigator at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.