Grezio, A., Wells, N.C., Ivchenko, V.O. and de Cuevas, B.A.
Dynamical budgets of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current using ocean general-circulation models
Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society, 131, (607), . (doi:10.1256/qj.03.213).
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Three general-circulation models (FRAM, OCCAM and POP) are used to investigate the dynamics of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) at the latitudes of the Drake Passage where the ACC is unbounded. In these general circulation models, bottom form stress balances the wind stress in the momentum budgets. In the vorticity budgets, the main balance is between wind curl and bottom pressure torque in FRAM, OCCAM and POP. Moreover, in the ACC belt all topographic features are regions of nonlinearity and bottom pressure torque variations, with the Drake Passage playing the largest role. Transient eddy Reynolds stresses (TERSs) play a different role in the three models. In the upper levels, TERSs accelerate the flow in the POP and FRAM models, but decelerate the flow in OCCAM. The behaviour of TERSs change throughout the whole water column in the ACC belt and Reynolds stresses have a dragging effect on the flow below the levels where the topography starts to obstruct the flow. The total volume transport in three models is very different. Additionally, the different spatial resolution, which results in a different level of eddy kinetic energy, has a significant influence on the transport.
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