Can paleoceanographic tracers constrain meridional circulation rates?
MetadataShow full item record
The ability of paleoceanographic tracers to constrain rates of transport is examined using an inverse method to combine idealized observations with a geostrophic model. Considered are the spatial distribution, accuracy, and types of tracers required to constrain changes in meridional transport within an idealized single-hemisphere basin. Measurements of density and radioactive tracers each act to constrain rates of transport. Conservative tracers, while not of themselves able to inform regarding rates of transport, improve constraints when coupled with density or radioactive observations. It is found that the tracer data would require an accuracy one order of magnitude better than is presently available for paleo-observations to conclusively rule out factor-of-2 changes in meridional transport, even when assumed available over the entire model domain. When data are available only at the margins and bottom of the model, radiocarbon is unable to constrain transport while density remains effective only when a reference velocity level is assumed. The difficulty in constraining the circulation in this idealized model indicates that placing firm bounds on past meridional transport rates will prove challenging.
Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2007. This article is posted here by permission of American Meteorological Society for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Physical Oceanography 37 (2007): 394-407, doi:10.1175/jpo3018.1.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Mixing in the North Atlantic Tracer Release Experiment : observations and numerical simulations of Lagrangian particles and passive tracer Sundermeyer, Miles A. (Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 1995-09)Mixing and stirring of passive tracer and Lagrangian particles in the open ocean was studied through comparison of observations from the North Atlantic Tracer Release Experiment, a numerical model, and existing theory. ...
Mesopelagic respiration near the ESTOC (European Station for Time-Series in the Ocean, 15.5°W, 29.1°N) site inferred from a tracer conservation model Fernández Castro, Bieito; Arístegui, Javier; Anderson, Lawrence; Montero, Maria F.; Hernández-León, Santiago; Marañón, Emilio; Mouriño-Carballido, Beatriz (2016-05-23)Remineralization of organic matter in the mesopelagic zone (ca. 150–700 m) is a key controlling factor of carbon export to the deep ocean. By using a tracer conservation model applied to climatological data of oxygen, ...
Insight into chemical, biological, and physical processes in coastal waters from dissolved oxygen and inert gas tracers Manning, Cara C. (Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 2017-02)In this thesis, I use coastal measurements of dissolved O2 and inert gases to provide insight into the chemical, biological, and physical processes that impact the oceanic cycles of carbon and dissolved gases. Dissolved ...