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A regional numerical ocean model of the circulation in the Bay of Biscay

A regional numerical ocean model of the circulation in the Bay of Biscay
A regional numerical ocean model of the circulation in the Bay of Biscay
The seasonal circulation along the northern Iberian Peninsula and in the Bay of Biscay is investigated by means of a regional ocean model. In particular, the modeled velocities and tracers are compared to available observations and used to hypothesize what the circulation may look like in areas where the density of observations is scarcer. Despite a few biases in the thermohaline properties of some water masses, the model is able to represent the various water masses present in the region in an acceptable way. In particular, the density and depth ranges of most water masses are in good agreement with observed ranges. Similarly, the circulation schemes compare generally well with observations, both in annual mean as for the seasonal features. The model simulates a baroclinic slope current system that extends within the upper 2000 m and is subject to a strong seasonal variability. As a result, these slope currents are seen to reverse seasonally at all depths. A numerical Lagrangian analysis indicates that water masses cannot be transported continuously within the slope currents in or out of the Bay of Biscay because of the flow reversals associated with this seasonality. Instead, this analysis highlights the numerous connections with the slope current system and the interior, in agreement with Lagrangian drifter data.
bay of biscay, numerical modeling, seasonality
0148-0227
C09008-[19pp]
Friocourt, Y.
16101e44-1594-4827-8a87-6677a403c102
Levier, B.
ee2363ca-5346-4ba2-8670-9392197c402b
Speich, S.
6eae319c-8f65-4cd3-9e28-618c7a342404
Blanke, B.
dd77e15a-ed3c-47bf-a29a-6799189a0873
Drijfhout, S.S.
a5c76079-179b-490c-93fe-fc0391aacf13
Friocourt, Y.
16101e44-1594-4827-8a87-6677a403c102
Levier, B.
ee2363ca-5346-4ba2-8670-9392197c402b
Speich, S.
6eae319c-8f65-4cd3-9e28-618c7a342404
Blanke, B.
dd77e15a-ed3c-47bf-a29a-6799189a0873
Drijfhout, S.S.
a5c76079-179b-490c-93fe-fc0391aacf13

Friocourt, Y., Levier, B., Speich, S., Blanke, B. and Drijfhout, S.S. (2007) A regional numerical ocean model of the circulation in the Bay of Biscay. Journal of Geophysical Research, 112 (C9), C09008-[19pp]. (doi:10.1029/2006JC003935).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The seasonal circulation along the northern Iberian Peninsula and in the Bay of Biscay is investigated by means of a regional ocean model. In particular, the modeled velocities and tracers are compared to available observations and used to hypothesize what the circulation may look like in areas where the density of observations is scarcer. Despite a few biases in the thermohaline properties of some water masses, the model is able to represent the various water masses present in the region in an acceptable way. In particular, the density and depth ranges of most water masses are in good agreement with observed ranges. Similarly, the circulation schemes compare generally well with observations, both in annual mean as for the seasonal features. The model simulates a baroclinic slope current system that extends within the upper 2000 m and is subject to a strong seasonal variability. As a result, these slope currents are seen to reverse seasonally at all depths. A numerical Lagrangian analysis indicates that water masses cannot be transported continuously within the slope currents in or out of the Bay of Biscay because of the flow reversals associated with this seasonality. Instead, this analysis highlights the numerous connections with the slope current system and the interior, in agreement with Lagrangian drifter data.

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More information

e-pub ahead of print date: 14 September 2007
Published date: September 2007
Keywords: bay of biscay, numerical modeling, seasonality
Organisations: Ocean and Earth Science

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 349146
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/349146
ISSN: 0148-0227
PURE UUID: 0afe74af-77b5-494a-9f25-a789f91561a6

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Date deposited: 26 Feb 2013 10:24
Last modified: 07 Jan 2022 21:26

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Contributors

Author: Y. Friocourt
Author: B. Levier
Author: S. Speich
Author: B. Blanke
Author: S.S. Drijfhout

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