The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Subtropical cells and meridional overturning circulation pathways in the tropical Atlantic

Subtropical cells and meridional overturning circulation pathways in the tropical Atlantic
Subtropical cells and meridional overturning circulation pathways in the tropical Atlantic
Pathways of subtropical cells (STCs) and the basin-wide meridional overturning circulation (MOC) are studied in the tropical Atlantic using a particle tracking algorithm and transports from a high-resolution ocean model. Here 16 Sv (=106 m3 s-1) of MOC water flows to the equator from the south, primarily in the North Brazil Current. The MOC water recirculates in the tropics and, after crossing the equator about half of it, stays along the western boundary and the other half loops in a cyclonic circulation northward to join the North Equatorial Current. The STC on the Southern Hemisphere has a strength of 4 Sv. The northern STC has a strength of 1.5 Sv; it is confined to the retroflection area close to the equator and it contains primarily MOC water. In total, 5.5 Sv of MOC water entrains into the mixed layer in the tropical Atlantic. Here 2 Sv of MOC water recirculates in the southern STC and 1.5 Sv in the northern STC. The STCs are weaker than suggested from observations, but the interior flows in the model compare well to observations. The heat transport divergence that is associated with warming of MOC water masses between 10°S and 10°N is 0.22 PW (=1015W). The fresh water transport divergence of MOC water masses in the tropical Atlantic is 0.16 Sv. It is concluded that the MOC can substantially affect the tropical circulation, but the tropical circulation itself can also affect MOC properties.
moc, stc, tropical atlantic
0148-0227
C03013-[13pp]
Hazeleger, Wilco
21d5b030-1127-424f-b22b-0a470dcb5b32
Drijfhout, Sybren
a5c76079-179b-490c-93fe-fc0391aacf13
Hazeleger, Wilco
21d5b030-1127-424f-b22b-0a470dcb5b32
Drijfhout, Sybren
a5c76079-179b-490c-93fe-fc0391aacf13

Hazeleger, Wilco and Drijfhout, Sybren (2006) Subtropical cells and meridional overturning circulation pathways in the tropical Atlantic. Journal of Geophysical Research, 111 (C3), C03013-[13pp]. (doi:10.1029/2005JC002942).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Pathways of subtropical cells (STCs) and the basin-wide meridional overturning circulation (MOC) are studied in the tropical Atlantic using a particle tracking algorithm and transports from a high-resolution ocean model. Here 16 Sv (=106 m3 s-1) of MOC water flows to the equator from the south, primarily in the North Brazil Current. The MOC water recirculates in the tropics and, after crossing the equator about half of it, stays along the western boundary and the other half loops in a cyclonic circulation northward to join the North Equatorial Current. The STC on the Southern Hemisphere has a strength of 4 Sv. The northern STC has a strength of 1.5 Sv; it is confined to the retroflection area close to the equator and it contains primarily MOC water. In total, 5.5 Sv of MOC water entrains into the mixed layer in the tropical Atlantic. Here 2 Sv of MOC water recirculates in the southern STC and 1.5 Sv in the northern STC. The STCs are weaker than suggested from observations, but the interior flows in the model compare well to observations. The heat transport divergence that is associated with warming of MOC water masses between 10°S and 10°N is 0.22 PW (=1015W). The fresh water transport divergence of MOC water masses in the tropical Atlantic is 0.16 Sv. It is concluded that the MOC can substantially affect the tropical circulation, but the tropical circulation itself can also affect MOC properties.

This record has no associated files available for download.

More information

Published date: March 2006
Keywords: moc, stc, tropical atlantic
Organisations: Ocean and Earth Science

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 349159
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/349159
ISSN: 0148-0227
PURE UUID: d01e2499-2714-4e24-834a-6298772d6e11

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 26 Feb 2013 10:57
Last modified: 27 Apr 2022 05:12

Export record

Altmetrics

Contributors

Author: Wilco Hazeleger

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×