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Low-frequency Atlantic sea level variability

Low-frequency Atlantic sea level variability
Low-frequency Atlantic sea level variability
The control run of the Hadley Centre-coupled climate model (HadCM3) is used to establish the sources of multidecadal/centennial sea level (SL) variations in the northwest Atlantic. It is shown that variations in the sea level for the largest part of this area are related to variations in the thermohaline structure of the upper (?500 m) part of the ocean. Temperature variations dominate steric sea level variations, while salinity variations are dominant only in the margins of the Labrador Sea and near the Mediterranean outflow. In the Labrador Sea, lower layers in the ocean also contribute to the variability in expansion/contraction of the water column. It is shown that along the North American East Coast, variations in the thermohaline structure of the water column are predominantly related to variations in the wind-driven circulation rather than the thermohaline circulation, which dominates the thermohaline structure in the central parts of the North Atlantic. In the Gulf Stream area and near the Labrador Current, sea level has on the multidecadal/centennial time scale a strong barotropic signal superposed on steric sea level variations.
sea level, north atlantic, ocean circulation, climate modelling
0921-8181
129-144
van der Schrier, G.
75cad588-0db4-4ce1-b72a-4ea8db80ac63
Weber, S.L.
6d40758d-ce76-4faa-b8a9-727ca6189a10
Drijfhout, S.S.
a5c76079-179b-490c-93fe-fc0391aacf13
Lowe, J.A.
16f7a8e7-f872-4801-8f57-c305ffb1106d
van der Schrier, G.
75cad588-0db4-4ce1-b72a-4ea8db80ac63
Weber, S.L.
6d40758d-ce76-4faa-b8a9-727ca6189a10
Drijfhout, S.S.
a5c76079-179b-490c-93fe-fc0391aacf13
Lowe, J.A.
16f7a8e7-f872-4801-8f57-c305ffb1106d

van der Schrier, G., Weber, S.L., Drijfhout, S.S. and Lowe, J.A. (2004) Low-frequency Atlantic sea level variability. Global and Planetary Change, 43 (3-4), 129-144. (doi:10.1016/j.gloplacha.2004.03.001).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The control run of the Hadley Centre-coupled climate model (HadCM3) is used to establish the sources of multidecadal/centennial sea level (SL) variations in the northwest Atlantic. It is shown that variations in the sea level for the largest part of this area are related to variations in the thermohaline structure of the upper (?500 m) part of the ocean. Temperature variations dominate steric sea level variations, while salinity variations are dominant only in the margins of the Labrador Sea and near the Mediterranean outflow. In the Labrador Sea, lower layers in the ocean also contribute to the variability in expansion/contraction of the water column. It is shown that along the North American East Coast, variations in the thermohaline structure of the water column are predominantly related to variations in the wind-driven circulation rather than the thermohaline circulation, which dominates the thermohaline structure in the central parts of the North Atlantic. In the Gulf Stream area and near the Labrador Current, sea level has on the multidecadal/centennial time scale a strong barotropic signal superposed on steric sea level variations.

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More information

Published date: November 2004
Keywords: sea level, north atlantic, ocean circulation, climate modelling
Organisations: Ocean and Earth Science

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 349170
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/349170
ISSN: 0921-8181
PURE UUID: c1fbc1b9-312e-4fb1-94d7-9a81a54c0d79

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Date deposited: 26 Feb 2013 11:19
Last modified: 08 Jan 2022 12:03

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Contributors

Author: G. van der Schrier
Author: S.L. Weber
Author: S.S. Drijfhout
Author: J.A. Lowe

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