Structure, transport, and seasonality of the Atlantic Water boundary current north of Svalbard: Results from a yearlong mooring array

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Pérez-Hernández, M. Dolores
Pickart, Robert S.
Torres, Daniel J.
Bahr, Frank B.
Sundfjord, Arild
Ingvaldsen, Randi B.
Renner, Angelika H. H.
Beszczynska-Möller, Agnieszka
von Appen, Wilken‐Jon
Pavlov, Vladimir
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Atlantic Water
Svalbard branch
Arctic Ocean
Fram Strait branch
The characteristics and seasonality of the Svalbard branch of the Atlantic Water (AW) boundary current in the Eurasian Basin are investigated using data from a six‐mooring array deployed near 30°E between September 2012 and September 2013. The instrument coverage extended to 1,200‐m depth and approximately 50 km offshore of the shelf break, which laterally bracketed the flow. Averaged over the year, the transport of the current over this depth range was 3.96 ± 0.32 Sv (1 Sv = 106 m3/s). The transport within the AW layer was 2.08 ± 0.24 Sv. The current was typically subsurface intensified, and its dominant variability was associated with pulsing rather than meandering. From late summer to early winter the AW was warmest and saltiest, and its eastward transport was strongest (2.44 ± 0.12 Sv), while from midspring to midsummer the AW was coldest and freshest and its transport was weakest (1.10 ± 0.06 Sv). Deep mixed layers developed through the winter, extending to 400‐ to 500‐m depth in early spring until the pack ice encroached the area from the north shutting off the air‐sea buoyancy forcing. This vertical mixing modified a significant portion of the AW layer, suggesting that, as the ice cover continues to decrease in the southern Eurasian Basin, the AW will be more extensively transformed via local ventilation.
Author Posting. © American Geophysical Union, 2019. This article is posted here by permission of American Geophysical Union for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans 124(3), (2019): 1679-1698, doi:10.1029/2018JC014759.
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Perez-Hernandez, M. D., Pickart, R. S., Torres, D. J., Bahr, F., Sundfjord, A., Ingvaldsen, R., Renner, A. H. H., Beszczynska-Moller, A., von Appen, W. J., & Pavlov, V. (2019). Structure, transport, and seasonality of the Atlantic Water boundary current north of Svalbard: Results from a yearlong mooring array. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans, 124(3), 1679-1698.
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