Pickart Robert S.

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Robert S.

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  • Article
    Offshore transport of dense water from the East Greenland Shelf
    (American Meteorological Society, 2014-01) Harden, Benjamin E. ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Renfrew, Ian A.
    Data from a mooring deployed at the edge of the East Greenland shelf south of Denmark Strait from September 2007 to October 2008 are analyzed to investigate the processes by which dense water is transferred off the shelf. It is found that water denser than 27.7 kg m−3—as dense as water previously attributed to the adjacent East Greenland Spill Jet—resides near the bottom of the shelf for most of the year with no discernible seasonality. The mean velocity in the central part of the water column is directed along the isobaths, while the deep flow is bottom intensified and veers offshore. Two mechanisms for driving dense spilling events are investigated, one due to offshore forcing and the other associated with wind forcing. Denmark Strait cyclones propagating southward along the continental slope are shown to drive off-shelf flow at their leading edges and are responsible for much of the triggering of individual spilling events. Northerly barrier winds also force spilling. Local winds generate an Ekman downwelling cell. Nonlocal winds also excite spilling, which is hypothesized to be the result of southward-propagating coastally trapped waves, although definitive confirmation is still required. The combined effect of the eddies and barrier winds results in the strongest spilling events, while in the absence of winds a train of eddies causes enhanced spilling.
  • Technical Report
    Hydrographic data from Endeavor 214 : a study of the Gulf Stream - Deep Western Boundary Current crossover
    (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 1992-05) Pickart, Robert S. ; McKee, Theresa K. ; Smethie, William M.
    In late June, 1990, a 17-day cruise aboard R/V ENDEAVOR was undertaken to investigate the manner in which the Deep Western Boundary Current (DWBC) crosses under the Gulf Stream. Forty-four CTD casts, comprising five sections, were made along with bottle measurements of Dissolved Oxygen, Nitrate, Nitrite, Phosphate, Silica, F-1l, and F-12. An acoustic transport float (POGO) was deployed at each station to obtain a measurement of the upper layer transport. The shipboard Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler (ADCP) measured currents thoughout the cruise. This report presents vertical profiles and sections of the bottle and CTD data a vector map of the average POGO currents, and listings of the bottle data.
  • Article
    Circulation in the vicinity of Mackenzie Canyon from a year-long mooring array
    (Elsevier, 2020-07-04) Lin, Peigen ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Fissel, David ; Ross, Ed ; Kasper, Jeremy L. ; Bahr, Frank B. ; Torres, Daniel J. ; O’Brien, Jeff ; Borg, Keath ; Melling, Humfrey ; Wiese, Francis K.
    Data from a five-mooring array extending from the inner shelf to the continental slope in the vicinity of Mackenzie Canyon, Beaufort Sea are analyzed to elucidate the components of the boundary current system and their variability. The array, part of the Marine Arctic Ecosystem Study (MARES), was deployed from October 2016 to September 2017. Four distinct currents were identified: an eastward-directed flow adjacent to the coast; a westward-flowing, surface-intensified current centered on the outer-shelf; a bottom-intensified shelfbreak jet flowing to the east; and a recirculation at the base of the continental slope within the canyon. The shelf current transports −0.120.03 Sv in the mean and is primarily wind-driven. The response is modulated by the presence of ice, with little-to-no signal during periods of nearly-immobile ice cover and maximum response when there is partial ice cover. The shelfbreak jet transports 0.030.02 Sv in the mean, compared to 0.080.02 Sv measured upstream in the Alaskan Beaufort Sea over the same time period. The loss of transport is consistent with a previous energetics analysis and the lack of Pacific-origin summer water downstream. The recirculation in the canyon appears to be the result of local dynamics whereby a portion of the westward-flowing southern limb of the Beaufort Gyre is diverted up the canyon across isobaths. This interpretation is supported by the fact that the low-frequency variability of the recirculation is correlated with the wind-stress curl in the Canada Basin, which drives the Beaufort gyre.
  • Article
    Multidecadal mobility of the North Atlantic Oscillation
    (American Meteorological Society, 2013-04-15) Moore, G. W. K. ; Renfrew, Ian A. ; Pickart, Robert S.
    The North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) is one of the most important modes of variability in the global climate system and is characterized by a meridional dipole in the sea level pressure field, with centers of action near Iceland and the Azores. It has a profound influence on the weather, climate, ecosystems, and economies of Europe, Greenland, eastern North America, and North Africa. It has been proposed that around 1980, there was an eastward secular shift in the NAO’s northern center of action that impacted sea ice export through Fram Strait. Independently, it has also been suggested that the location of its southern center of action is tied to the phase of the NAO. Both of these attributes of the NAO have been linked to anthropogenic climate change. Here the authors use both the one-point correlation map technique as well as empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analysis to show that the meridional dipole that is often seen in the sea level pressure field over the North Atlantic is not purely the result of the NAO (as traditionally defined) but rather arises through an interplay among the NAO and two other leading modes of variability in the North Atlantic region: the East Atlantic (EA) and the Scandinavian (SCA) patterns. This interplay has resulted in multidecadal mobility in the two centers of action of the meridional dipole since the late nineteenth century. In particular, an eastward movement of the dipole has occurred during the 1930s to 1950s as well as more recently. This mobility is not seen in the leading EOF of the sea level pressure field in the region.
  • Article
    Time dependent flow of Atlantic water on the continental slope of the Beaufort Sea based on moorings
    (American Geophysical Union, 2021-05-26) Li, Jianqiang ; Lin, Peigen ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Yang, Xiao-Yi
    The flow and transformation of warm, salty Atlantic-origin water (AW) in the Arctic Ocean plays an important role in the global overturning circulation that helps regulate Earth's climate. The heat that it transports also impacts ice melt in different parts of the Arctic. This study uses data from a mooring array deployed across the shelf/slope of the Alaskan Beaufort Sea from 2002–2004 to investigate the flow of AW. A short-lived “rebound jet” of AW on the upper continental slope regularly follows wind-driven upwelling events. A total of 57 such events, lasting on average 3 days each, occurred over the 2 year period. As the easterly wind subsides, the rebound jet quickly spins up while the isopycnals continue to slump from their upwelled state. The strength of the jet is related to the cross-slope isopycnal displacement, which in turn is dependent on the magnitude of the wind, in line with previous modeling. Seaward of the rebound jet, the offshore-most mooring of the array measured the onshore branch of the AW boundary flowing eastward in the Canada Basin. However, the signature of the boundary current was only evident in the second year of the mooring timeseries. We suspect that this is due to the varying influence of the Beaufort Gyre in the two years, associated with a change in pattern of the wind stress curl that helps drive the gyre.
  • Article
    Observed deep cyclonic eddies around Southern Greenland
    (American Meteorological Society, 2021-10-01) Zou, Sijia ; Bower, Amy S. ; Furey, Heather H. ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Houpert, Loïc ; Holliday, Naomi Penny
    Recent mooring measurements from the Overturning in the Subpolar North Atlantic Program have revealed abundant cyclonic eddies at both sides of Cape Farewell, the southern tip of Greenland. In this study, we present further observational evidence, from both Eulerian and Lagrangian perspectives, of deep cyclonic eddies with intense rotation (ζ/f > 1) around southern Greenland and into the Labrador Sea. Most of the observed cyclones exhibit strongest rotation below the surface at 700–1000 dbar, where maximum azimuthal velocities are ~30 cm s−1 at radii of ~10 km, with rotational periods of 2–3 days. The cyclonic rotation can extend to the deep overflow water layer (below 1800 dbar), albeit with weaker azimuthal velocities (~10 cm s−1) and longer rotational periods of about one week. Within the middepth rotation cores, the cyclones are in near solid-body rotation and have the potential to trap and transport water. The first high-resolution hydrographic transect across such a cyclone indicates that it is characterized by a local (both vertically and horizontally) potential vorticity maximum in its middepth core and cold, fresh anomalies in the deep overflow water layer, suggesting its source as the Denmark Strait outflow. Additionally, the propagation and evolution of the cyclonic eddies are illustrated with deep Lagrangian floats, including their detachments from the boundary currents to the basin interior. Taken together, the combined Eulerian and Lagrangian observations have provided new insights on the boundary current variability and boundary–interior exchange over a geographically large scale near southern Greenland, calling for further investigations on the (sub)mesoscale dynamics in the region.
  • Article
    Observational and modeling evidence of seasonal trends in sediment-derived material inputs to the Chukchi Sea
    (American Geophysical Union, 2020-04-27) Kipp, Lauren ; Spall, Michael A. ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Kadko, David C. ; Moore, Willard S. ; Dabrowski, Jessica S. ; Charette, Matthew A.
    Benthic inputs of nutrients help support primary production in the Chukchi Sea and produce nutrient‐rich water masses that ventilate the halocline of the western Arctic Ocean. However, the complex biological and redox cycling of nutrients and trace metals make it difficult to directly monitor their benthic fluxes. In this study, we use radium‐228, which is a soluble radionuclide produced in sediments, and a numerical model of an inert, generic sediment‐derived tracer to study variability in sediment inputs to the Chukchi Sea. The 228Ra observations and modeling results are in general agreement and provide evidence of strong benthic inputs to the southern Chukchi Sea during the winter, while the northern shelf receives higher concentrations of sediment‐sourced materials in the spring and summer due to continued sediment‐water exchange as the water mass traverses the shelf. The highest tracer concentrations are observed near the shelfbreak and southeast of Hanna Shoal, a region known for high biological productivity and enhanced benthic biomass.
  • Article
    Liquid freshwater transport estimates from the East Greenland Current based on continuous measurements north of Denmark Strait
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2017-01-10) de Steur, Laura ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Macrander, Andreas ; Våge, Kjetil ; Harden, Benjamin E. ; Jónsson, Steingrímur ; Østerhus, Svein ; Valdimarsson, Héðinn
    Liquid freshwater transports of the shelfbreak East Greenland Current (EGC) and the separated EGC are determined from mooring records from the Kögur section north of Denmark Strait between August 2011 and July 2012. The 11 month mean freshwater transport (FWT), relative to a salinity of 34.8, was 65 ± 11 mSv to the south. Approximately 70% of this was associated with the shelfbreak EGC and the remaining 30% with the separated EGC. Very large southward FWT ranging from 160 mSv to 120 mSv was observed from September to mid-October 2011 and was foremost due to anomalously low upper-layer salinities. The FWT may, however, be underestimated by approximately 5 mSv due to sampling biases in the upper ocean. The FWT on the Greenland shelf was estimated using additional inshore moorings deployed from 2012 to 2014. While the annual mean ranged from nearly zero during the first year to 18 mSv to the south during the second year, synoptically the FWT on the shelf can be significant. Furthermore, an anomalous event in autumn 2011 caused the shelfbreak EGC to reverse, leading to a large reduction in FWT. This reversed circulation was due to the passage of a large, 100 km wide anticyclone originating upstream from the shelfbreak. The late summer FWT of −131 mSv is 150% larger than earlier estimates based on sections in the late-1990s and early-2000s. This increase is likely the result of enhanced freshwater flux from the Arctic Ocean to the Nordic Seas during the early 2010s.
  • Article
    Remote climate forcing of decadal-scale regime shifts in Northwest Atlantic shelf ecosystems
    (Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography, 2013-05) Greene, Charles H. ; Meyer-Gutbrod, Erin ; Monger, Bruce C. ; McGarry, Louise P. ; Pershing, Andrew J. ; Belkin, Igor M. ; Fratantoni, Paula S. ; Mountain, David G. ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Proshutinsky, Andrey ; Ji, Rubao ; Bisagni, James J. ; Hakkinen, Sirpa M. A. ; Haidvogel, Dale B. ; Wang, Jia ; Head, Erica ; Smith, Peter ; Reid, Philip C. ; Conversi, Alessandra
    Decadal-scale regime shifts in Northwest Atlantic shelf ecosystems can be remotely forced by climate-associated atmosphere–ocean interactions in the North Atlantic and Arctic Ocean Basins. This remote climate forcing is mediated primarily by basin- and hemispheric-scale changes in ocean circulation. We review and synthesize results from process-oriented field studies and retrospective analyses of time-series data to document the linkages between climate, ocean circulation, and ecosystem dynamics. Bottom-up forcing associated with climate plays a prominent role in the dynamics of these ecosystems, comparable in importance to that of top-down forcing associated with commercial fishing. A broad perspective, one encompassing the effects of basin- and hemispheric-scale climate processes on marine ecosystems, will be critical to the sustainable management of marine living resources in the Northwest Atlantic.
  • Article
    Mean and seasonal circulation of the eastern Chukchi Sea from moored timeseries in 2013-2014
    (American Geophysical Union, 2021-04-30) Tian, Fei ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Lin, Peigen ; Pacini, Astrid ; Moore, G. W. K. ; Stabeno, Phyllis J. ; Weingartner, Thomas J. ; Itoh, Motoyo ; Kikuchi, Takashi ; Dobbins, Elizabeth ; Bell, Shaun ; Woodgate, Rebecca ; Danielson, Seth L. ; Wang, Zhaomin
    From late-summer 2013 to late-summer 2014, a total of 20 moorings were maintained on the eastern Chukchi Sea shelf as part of five independent field programs. This provided the opportunity to analyze an extensive set of timeseries to obtain a broad view of the mean and seasonally varying hydrography and circulation over the course of the year. Year-long mean bottom temperatures reflected the presence of the strong coastal circulation pathway, while mean bottom salinities were influenced by polynya/lead activity along the coast. The timing of the warm water appearance in spring/summer is linked to advection along the various flow pathways. The timing of the cold water appearance in fall/winter was not reflective of advection nor related to the time of freeze-up. Near the latitude of Barrow Canyon, the cold water was accompanied by freshening. A one-dimensional mixed-layer model demonstrates that wind mixing, due to synoptic storms, overturns the water column resulting in the appearance of the cold water. The loitering pack ice in the region, together with warm southerly winds, melted ice and provided an intermittent source of fresh water that was mixed to depth according to the model. Farther north, the ambient stratification prohibits wind-driven overturning, hence the cold water arrives from the south. The circulation during the warm and cold months of the year is different in both strength and pattern. Our study highlights the multitude of factors involved in setting the seasonal cycle of hydrography and circulation on the Chukchi shelf.
  • Article
    Influence of the Icelandic Low latitude on the frequency of Greenland tip jet events : implications for Irminger Sea convection
    (American Geophysical Union, 2007-04-26) Bakalian, F. ; Hameed, S. ; Pickart, Robert S.
    The occurrence of Greenland tip jet events has been reported as the dominant factor controlling the formation of intermediate water in the Irminger Sea. It has been suggested that the frequency of these events is correlated with the North Atlantic Oscillation. To examine this process in more detail, we separate the North Atlantic Oscillation into Icelandic Low and Azores High components and carry out a regression fit of the frequency of tip jet events between 1961 and 2005. Our findings suggest that the frequency of Greenland tip jet events is highly dependent on the latitude of the Icelandic Low and the 2-year time-lagged February Icelandic Low latitude, with R2 = 0.48. We find that the winds near the southern tip of Greenland are predominately westerly during years when the Iceland Low is located above 63°N latitude. These conditions also correspond to colder air temperatures in the Labrador and Irminger Seas, implying larger oceanic heat losses due to the Greenland tip jet events and hence stronger convective overturning in the Irminger Sea.
  • Article
    Whither the Chukchi Slope Current?
    (American Meteorological Society, 2020-06-01) Boury, Samuel ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Odier, Philippe ; Lin, Peigen ; Li, Min ; Fine, Elizabeth C. ; Simmons, Harper L. ; MacKinnon, Jennifer A. ; Peacock, Thomas
    Recent measurements and modeling indicate that roughly half of the Pacific-origin water exiting the Chukchi Sea shelf through Barrow Canyon forms a westward-flowing current known as the Chukchi Slope Current (CSC), yet the trajectory and fate of this current is presently unknown. In this study, through the combined use of shipboard velocity data and information from five profiling floats deployed as quasi-Lagrangian particles, we delve further into the trajectory and the fate of the CSC. During the period of observation, from early September to early October 2018, the CSC progressed far to the north into the Chukchi Borderland. The northward excursion is believed to result from the current negotiating Hanna Canyon on the Chukchi slope, consistent with potential vorticity dynamics. The volume transport of the CSC, calculated using a set of shipboard transects, decreased from approximately 2 Sv (1 Sv ≡ 106 m3 s−1) to near zero over a period of 4 days. This variation can be explained by a concomitant change in the wind stress curl over the Chukchi shelf from positive to negative. After turning northward, the CSC was disrupted and four of the five floats veered offshore, with one of the floats permanently leaving the current. It is hypothesized that the observed disruption was due to an anticyclonic eddy interacting with the CSC, which has been observed previously. These results demonstrate that, at times, the CSC can get entrained into the Beaufort Gyre.
  • Article
    Evolution and transformation of the North Icelandic Irminger Current along the North Iceland Shelf
    (American Geophysical Union, 2022-02-20) Semper, Stefanie ; Våge, Kjetil ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Jónsson, Steingrímur ; Valdimarsson, Héðinn
    The North Icelandic Irminger Current (NIIC) flowing northward through Denmark Strait is the main source of salt and heat to the north Iceland shelf. We quantify its along-stream evolution using the first high-resolution hydrographic/velocity survey north of Iceland that spans the entire shelf along with historical hydrographic measurements as well as data from satellites and surface drifters. The NIIC generally follows the shelf break. Portions of the flow recirculate near Denmark Strait and the Kolbeinsey Ridge. The current's volume transport diminishes northeast of Iceland before it merges with the Atlantic Water inflow east of Iceland. The hydrographic properties of the current are modified along its entire pathway, predominantly because of lateral mixing with cold, fresh offshore waters rather than air-sea interaction. Progressing eastward, the NIIC cools and freshens by approximately 0.3°C and 0.02–0.03 g kg−1 per 100 km, respectively, in both summer and winter. Dense-water formation on the shelf is limited, occurring only sporadically in the historical record. The hydrographic properties of this locally formed water match the lighter portion of the North Icelandic Jet (NIJ), which emerges northeast of Iceland and transports dense water toward Denmark Strait. In the region northeast of Iceland, the NIIC is prone to baroclinic instability. Enhanced eddy kinetic energy over the steep slope there suggests a dynamical link between eddies shed by the NIIC and the formation of the NIJ as previously hypothesized. Thus, while the NIIC rarely supplies the NIJ directly, it may be dynamically important for the overturning circulation in the Nordic Seas.
  • Preprint
    Role of shelfbreak upwelling in the formation of a massive under-ice bloom in the Chukchi Sea
    ( 2014-02) Spall, Michael A. ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Brugler, Eric T. ; Moore, G. W. K. ; Thomas, Leif N. ; Arrigo, Kevin R.
    In the summer of 2011, an oceanographic survey carried out by the Impacts of Climate on EcoSystems and Chemistry of the Arctic Pacific Environment (ICESCAPE) program revealed the presence of a massive phytoplankton bloom under the ice near the shelfbreak in the central Chukchi Sea. For most of the month preceding the measurements there were relatively strong easterly winds, providing upwelling favorable conditions along the shelfbreak. Analysis of similar hydrographic data from summer 2002, in which there were no persistent easterly winds, found no evidence of upwelling near the shelfbreak. A two-dimensional ocean circulation model is used to show that sufficiently strong winds can result not only in upwelling of high nutrient water from offshore onto the shelf, but it can also transport the water out of the bottom boundary layer into the surface Ekman layer at the shelf edge. The extent of upwelling is determined by the degree of overlap between the surface Ekman layer and the bottom boundary layer on the outer shelf. Once in the Ekman layer, this high nutrient water is further transported to the surface through mechanical mixing driven by the surface stress. Two model tracers, a nutrient tracer and a chlorophyll tracer, reveal distributions very similar to that observed in the data. These results suggest that the biomass maximum near the shelfbreak during the massive bloom in summer 2011 resulted from an enhanced supply of nutrients upwelled from the halocline seaward of the shelf. The decade long trend in summertime surface winds suggest that easterly winds in this region are increasing in strength and that such bloom events will become more common.
  • Article
    Late spring nitrate distributions beneath the ice-covered northeastern Chukchi Shelf
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2017-09-18) Arrigo, Kevin R. ; Mills, Matthew M. ; Van Dijken, Gert ; Lowry, Kate E. ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Schlitzer, Reiner
    Measurements of late springtime nutrient concentrations in Arctic waters are relatively rare due to the extensive sea ice cover that makes sampling difficult. During the SUBICE (Study of Under-ice Blooms In the Chukchi Ecosystem) cruise in May–June 2014, an extensive survey of hydrography and prebloom concentrations of inorganic macronutrients, oxygen, particulate organic carbon and nitrogen, and chlorophyll a was conducted in the northeastern Chukchi Sea. Cold (<−1.5°C) winter water was prevalent throughout the study area, and the water column was weakly stratified. Nitrate (NO3−) concentration averaged 12.6 ± 1.92 μM in surface waters and 14.0 ± 1.91 μM near the bottom and was significantly correlated with salinity. The highest NO3− concentrations were associated with winter water within the Central Channel flow path. NO3− concentrations were much reduced near the northern shelf break within the upper halocline waters of the Canada Basin and along the eastern side of the shelf near the Alaskan coast. Net community production (NCP), estimated as the difference in depth-integrated NO3− content between spring (this study) and summer (historical), varied from 28 to 38 g C m−2 a−1. This is much lower than previous NCP estimates that used NO3− concentrations from the southeastern Bering Sea as a baseline. These results demonstrate the importance of using profiles of NO3− measured as close to the beginning of the spring bloom as possible when estimating local NCP. They also show that once the snow melts in spring, increased light transmission through the sea ice to the waters below the ice could fuel large phytoplankton blooms over a much wider area than previously known.
  • Article
    The annual salinity cycle of the Denmark Strait Overflow
    (American Geophysical Union, 2022-03-22) Opher, Jacob G. ; Brearley, J. Alexander ; Dye, Stephen R. ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Renfrew, Ian A. ; Harden, Benjamin E. ; Meredith, Michael P.
    The Denmark Strait Overflow (DSO) is an important source of dense water input to the deep limb of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC). It is fed by separate currents from the north that advect dense water masses formed in the Nordic Seas and Arctic Ocean which then converge at Denmark Strait. Here we identify an annual salinity cycle of the DSO, characterized by freshening in winter and spring. The freshening is linked to freshening of the Shelfbreak East Greenland Current in the Blosseville Basin north of the Denmark Strait. We demonstrate that the East Greenland Current advects fresh pycnocline water above the recirculating Atlantic Water, which forms a low salinity lid for the overflow in Denmark Strait and in the Irminger Basin. This concept is supported by intensified freshening of the DSO in lighter density classes on the Greenland side of the overflow. The salinity of the DSO in the Irminger Basin is significantly correlated with northerly/northeasterly winds in the Blosseville Basin at a lag of 3–4 months, consistent with estimated transit times. This suggests that wind driven variability of DSO source water exerts an important influence on the salinity variability of the downstream DSO, and hence the composition of the deep limb of the AMOC.
  • Preprint
    Surprising return of deep convection to the subpolar North Atlantic Ocean in winter 2007–2008
    ( 2008-11-07) Våge, Kjetil ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Thierry, Virginie ; Reverdin, Gilles ; Lee, Craig M. ; Petrie, Brian ; Agnew, Tom A. ; Wong, Amy ; Ribergaard, Mads H.
    The process of open-ocean convection in the subpolar North Atlantic Ocean forms a dense water mass that impacts the meridional overturning circulation and heat flux, and sequesters atmospheric carbon. In recent years the convection has been shallow or nonexistent, which could be construed as a consequence of a warmer climate. However, in the winter of 2007-08 deep convection returned to the subpolar gyre in both the Labrador and Irminger Seas. Here we document this return and elucidate the reasons why it happened. Profiling float data from the Argo programme are used to document the deep mixing, and a variety of in-situ, satellite, and reanalysis products are analyzed to describe the conditions leading to the overturning. The transition to a convective state took place abruptly, without going through a preconditioning phase, which is contrary to general expectations. Changes in the hemispheric air temperature, tracks of storms, flux of freshwater to the Labrador Sea, and distribution of pack ice all conspired to enhance the air-sea heat flux, resulting in the deep overturning. This study illuminates the complexity of the North Atlantic convective system.
  • Article
    Monitoring Alaskan Arctic shelf ecosystems through collaborative observation networks
    (Oceanography Society, 2022-04-28) Danielson, Seth L. ; Grebmeier, Jacqueline M. ; Iken, Katrin ; Berchok, Catherine L. ; Britt, Lyle ; Dunton, Kenneth ; Eisner, Lisa B. ; Farley, Edward V. ; Fujiwara, Amane ; Hauser, Donna D.W. ; Itoh, Motoyo ; Kikuchi, Takashi ; Kotwicki, Stan ; Kuletz, Kathy J. ; Mordy, Calvin W. ; Nishino, Shigeto ; Peralta-Ferriz, Cecilia ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Stabeno, Phyllis J. ; Stafford, Kathleen M. ; Whiting, Alex V. ; Woodgate, Rebecca
    Ongoing scientific programs that monitor marine environmental and ecological systems and changes comprise an informal but collaborative, information-rich, and spatially extensive network for the Alaskan Arctic continental shelves. Such programs reflect contributions and priorities of regional, national, and international funding agencies, as well as private donors and communities. These science programs are operated by a variety of local, regional, state, and national agencies, and academic, Tribal, for-profit, and nongovernmental nonprofit entities. Efforts include research ship and autonomous vehicle surveys, year-long mooring deployments, and observations from coastal communities. Inter-program coordination allows cost-effective leveraging of field logistics and collected data into value-added information that fosters new insights unattainable by any single program operating alone. Coordination occurs at many levels, from discussions at marine mammal co-management meetings and interagency meetings to scientific symposia and data workshops. Together, the efforts represented by this collection of loosely linked long-term monitoring programs enable a biologically focused scientific foundation for understanding ecosystem responses to warming water temperatures and declining Arctic sea ice. Here, we introduce a variety of currently active monitoring efforts in the Alaskan Arctic marine realm that exemplify the above attributes.
  • Article
    A continuous pathway for fresh water along the East Greenland shelf
    (American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2020-10-21) Foukal, Nicholas P. ; Gelderloos, Renske ; Pickart, Robert S.
    Export from the Arctic and meltwater from the Greenland Ice Sheet together form a southward-flowing coastal current along the East Greenland shelf. This current transports enough fresh water to substantially alter the large-scale circulation of the North Atlantic, yet the coastal current’s origin and fate are poorly known due to our lack of knowledge concerning its north-south connectivity. Here, we demonstrate how the current negotiates the complex topography of Denmark Strait using in situ data and output from an ocean circulation model. We determine that the coastal current north of the strait supplies half of the transport to the coastal current south of the strait, while the other half is sourced from offshore via the shelfbreak jet, with little input from the Greenland Ice Sheet. These results indicate that there is a continuous pathway for Arctic-sourced fresh water along the entire East Greenland shelf from Fram Strait to Cape Farewell.
  • Article
    Atmospheric forcing during active convection in the Labrador Sea and its impact on mixed-layer depth
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2016-09-22) Schulze, Lena M. ; Pickart, Robert S. ; Moore, G. W. K.
    Hydrographic data from the Labrador Sea collected in February–March 1997, together with atmospheric reanalysis fields, are used to explore relationships between the air-sea fluxes and the observed mixed-layer depths. The strongest winds and highest heat fluxes occurred in February, due to the nature and tracks of the storms. While greater numbers of storms occurred earlier and later in the winter, the storms in February followed a more organized track extending from the Gulf Stream region to the Irminger Sea where they slowed and deepened. The canonical low-pressure system that drives convection is located east of the southern tip of Greenland, with strong westerly winds advecting cold air off the ice edge over the warm ocean. The deepest mixed layers were observed in the western interior basin, although the variability in mixed-layer depth was greater in the eastern interior basin. The overall trend in mixed-layer depth through the winter in both regions of the basin was consistent with that predicted by a 1-D mixed-layer model. We argue that the deeper mixed layers in the west were due to the enhanced heat fluxes on that side of the basin as opposed to oceanic preconditioning.