João Bettencourt


Postdoctoral Fellow, SEAS Fellow



Dr. João Bettencourt is an ocean scientist specializing in physical-biogeochemical interactions and the effects of climate change on the marine biogeochemical cycles, especially on dissolved oxygen. He is currently a SEAS Postdoctoral Fellow in fjord oceanography at the Geophysical Institute of the University of Bergen. Dr. Bettencourt studies the effects of the changing coastal ocean and anthropogenic pressures on fjord biogeochemical cycles and sustainability as we enter the Anthropocene. During his Ph.D., he studied the nonlinear lagrangian analysis of ocean dynamics, the identification of transport barriers in the ocean, and the control and transport of chemical species by oceanic vortices and currents. He studied the transport dynamics of dissolved oxygen by mesoscale eddies in the Peruvian oxygen minimum zone and the impacts of climate change on the oxygen distributions in the western Iberian margin.

Academic article

See a complete overview of publications in Cristin.

João H Bettencourt and C. Guedes Soares. Variational data assimilation of sea surface temperature in a model of the eastern central north atlantic. Journal of Marine Science and Engineering, in preparation, 2021.

João H Bettencourt and C. Guedes Soares. Seasonality of the energy transfers in the azores current. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, submitted, 2021.

S Ponce de León and JH Bettencourt. Composite analysis of north atlantic extra-tropical cyclone waves from satellite altimetry observations. Advances in Space Research, 68:762–772, 2021.

João H Bettencourt, Vincent Rossi, Lionel Renault, Peter Haynes, Yves Morel, and Veronique Garcon. Effects of upwelling duration and phytoplankton growth regime on dissolved-oxygen levels in an idealized iberian peninsula upwelling system. Nonlinear Processes in Geophysics, 27(2):277–294, 2020.

João H Bettencourt and Frédéric Dias. Wall pressure and vorticity in the in- termittently turbulent regime of the stokes boundary layer. Journal of Fluid Mechanics, 851:479–506, 2018.

João H. Bettencourt, Vincent Rossi, Emilio Hernández-García, Martinho Marta- Almeida, and Cristóbal López. Characterization of the structure and cross- shore transport properties of a coastal upwelling filament using three-dimensional finite-size lyapunov exponents. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 122(9):7433– 7448, 2017.

Sonia Ponce de León, João H Bettencourt, and Frederic Dias. Comparison of numerical hindcasted severe waves with doppler radar measurements in the north sea. Ocean Dynamics, pages 1–13, 2016.

João H. Bettencourt, Cristóbal López, Emilio Hernández-García, Ivonne Montes, Joël Sudre, Boris Dewitte, Aurélien Paulmier, and Véronique Garçon. Boundaries of the peruvian oxygen minimum zone shaped by coherent mesoscale dynamics. Nature Geoscience, 8:937–940, November 2015.

João H Bettencourt, Cristóbal López, and Emilio Hernández-García. Characterization of coherent structures in three-dimensional turbulent flows using the finite-size Lyapunov exponent. Journal of Physics A: Mathematical and Theoreti- cal, 46(25):254022, 2013.

João H. Bettencourt, Cristóbal López, and Emilio Hernández-García. Oceanic three-dimensional Lagrangian coherent structures: A study of a mesoscale eddy in the Benguela upwelling region. Ocean Modelling, 51(0):73–83, 2012.

S. Ponce de León, J.H. Bettencourt, and N. Kjerstad. Simulation of irregular waves in an offshore wind farm with a spectral wave model. Continental Shelf Research, 31(15):1541–1557, 2011.


Sustainable Norwegian Fjords in the Anthropocene (SEAS Programme)

Glider surveys of hydrography and dissolved oxygen distribution in Masfjorden (co-lead; BCCR Fast-Track Initiative)