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An indicator of the multiple equilibria regime of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation

An indicator of the multiple equilibria regime of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation
An indicator of the multiple equilibria regime of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation
Recent model results have suggested that there may be a scalar indicator ? monitoring whether the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (MOC) is in a multiple equilibrium regime. The quantity ? is based on the net freshwater transport by the MOC into the Atlantic basin. It changes sign as soon as the steady Atlantic MOC enters the multiple equilibrium regime because of an increased freshwater input in the northern North Atlantic. This paper addresses the issue of why the sign of ? is such a good indicator for the multiple equilibrium regime. Changes in the Atlantic freshwater budget over a complete bifurcation diagram and in finite amplitude perturbation experiments are analyzed in a global ocean circulation model. The authors show that the net anomalous freshwater transport into or out of the Atlantic, resulting from the interactions of the velocity perturbations and salinity background field, is coupled to the background (steady state) state freshwater budget and hence to ?. The sign of ? precisely shows whether this net anomalous freshwater transport is stabilizing or destabilizing the MOC. Therefore, it can indicate whether the MOC is in a single or multiple equilibrium regime.

0022-3670
551-567
Huisman, Selma E.
71bfea75-1ee1-4a3d-b470-ef45fbd33d41
den Toom, Matthijs
4d4a5500-0c0c-474c-8042-08a602b999fe
Dijkstra, Henk A.
9178b06d-9de5-4f02-b9ff-204b20620291
Drijfhout, Sybren
a5c76079-179b-490c-93fe-fc0391aacf13
Huisman, Selma E.
71bfea75-1ee1-4a3d-b470-ef45fbd33d41
den Toom, Matthijs
4d4a5500-0c0c-474c-8042-08a602b999fe
Dijkstra, Henk A.
9178b06d-9de5-4f02-b9ff-204b20620291
Drijfhout, Sybren
a5c76079-179b-490c-93fe-fc0391aacf13

Huisman, Selma E., den Toom, Matthijs, Dijkstra, Henk A. and Drijfhout, Sybren (2010) An indicator of the multiple equilibria regime of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation. Journal of Physical Oceanography, 40 (3), 551-567. (doi:10.1175/2009JPO4215.1).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Recent model results have suggested that there may be a scalar indicator ? monitoring whether the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (MOC) is in a multiple equilibrium regime. The quantity ? is based on the net freshwater transport by the MOC into the Atlantic basin. It changes sign as soon as the steady Atlantic MOC enters the multiple equilibrium regime because of an increased freshwater input in the northern North Atlantic. This paper addresses the issue of why the sign of ? is such a good indicator for the multiple equilibrium regime. Changes in the Atlantic freshwater budget over a complete bifurcation diagram and in finite amplitude perturbation experiments are analyzed in a global ocean circulation model. The authors show that the net anomalous freshwater transport into or out of the Atlantic, resulting from the interactions of the velocity perturbations and salinity background field, is coupled to the background (steady state) state freshwater budget and hence to ?. The sign of ? precisely shows whether this net anomalous freshwater transport is stabilizing or destabilizing the MOC. Therefore, it can indicate whether the MOC is in a single or multiple equilibrium regime.

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Published date: March 2010
Organisations: Ocean and Earth Science

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Local EPrints ID: 340331
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/340331
ISSN: 0022-3670
PURE UUID: d5c5813a-91e5-4ee7-9130-155783d75f61

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Date deposited: 18 Jun 2012 15:45
Last modified: 02 Dec 2019 20:57

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