Portrait of Ren-Chieh Lien

Ren-Chieh Lien

Affiliate Professor


Ren-Chieh Lien is a physical oceanographer at the University of Washington’s Applied Physics Laboratory with an affiliate appointment in the School of Oceanography. He specializes in internal waves, vortical motions, and turbulence mixing in the upper ocean and their effects on upper ocean heat, salinity, momentum, and energy budgets. He is especially interested in understanding the modulation of internal waves and turbulence mixing by large-scale processes, as well as the effects of small-scale processes on large-scale flows. One of his most important findings is the strong modulation of turbulence mixing by large-scale equatorial processes, such as tropical instability waves and Kelvin waves, in the eastern equatorial Pacific. His research and experiments have been funded primarily by the National Science Foundation, the Office of Naval Research, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.