The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Heat and freshwater fluxes through the Nordic seas

Oliver, Kevin I.C. and Heywood, Karen J. (2003) Heat and freshwater fluxes through the Nordic seas Journal of Physical Oceanography, 33, (5), pp. 1009-1026. (doi:10.1175/1520-0485(2003)033<1009:HAFFTT>2.0.CO;2).

Record type: Article


The major exchanges of volume, heat, and freshwater between the Arctic Ocean and the World Ocean occur through the Nordic seas. Here is presented the northernmost estimate for the oceanic transport of these properties that is derived from a set of hydrographic and direct current measurements, using a lowered acoustic Doppler current profiler, between the Greenland and European coasts. By applying box inverse methods to a synoptic section from the summer of 1999, a heat transport of 0.20+/-0.08 PW toward the Arctic and a freshwater transport of 0.10+/-0.05 Sv (1 Svequivalent to10(6) m(3) s(-1)) away from the Arctic are calculated, with a likely additional freshwater transport on the order of 0.05 Sv near the Greenland coast. Uncertainties associated with how representative the section is of the seasonal mean are included in the error analysis. Large depth-independent components in the currents throughout the section, including the Atlantic inflow, are observed. The increase (decrease) in the heat transport resulting from an increase (decrease) in the transport of this inflow is 0.033 PW Sv(-1), and this is the dominant source of uncertainty in the solution. Therefore, determining only depth-dependent transports is unlikely to be sufficient when measuring heat transport in the region. The overturning components of the section heat and freshwater transport are 0.15+/-0.07 PW and 0.04+/-0.02 Sv, respectively. From the horizontal transport of layers within the section, a densification of 4.3+/-2.5 Sv of waters north of the section is predicted, to densities greater than the boundary between inflow and outflow waters between the Atlantic Ocean and the Nordic seas.

Full text not available from this repository.

More information

Published date: May 2003
Keywords: high latitude oceanography, inverse methods, meridional overturning circulation, thermohaline circulation, heat flux, transport


Local EPrints ID: 68795
ISSN: 0022-3670
PURE UUID: 608b0a87-79ca-4c48-b053-2f8edd8e2c50

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 05 Oct 2009
Last modified: 19 Jul 2017 00:15

Export record



Author: Karen J. Heywood

University divisions

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 supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of

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.