Compatible finite elements provide a framework for preserving important structures in equations of geophysical uid dynamics, and are becoming important in their use for building atmosphere and ocean models. We survey the application of compatible finite element spaces to geophysical uid dynamics, including the application to the nonlinear rotating shallow water equations, and the three-dimensional compressible Euler equations. We summarise analytic results about dispersion relations and conservation properties, and present new results on approximation properties in three dimensions on the sphere, and on hydrostatic balance properties.

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