Continuous, array-based estimates of Atlantic Ocean heat transport at 26.5°N


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dc.contributor.author Johns, W. E.
dc.contributor.author Baringer, Molly O.
dc.contributor.author Beal, L. M.
dc.contributor.author Cunningham, S. A.
dc.contributor.author Kanzow, Torsten
dc.contributor.author Bryden, Harry L.
dc.contributor.author Hirschi, J. J. M.
dc.contributor.author Marotzke, J.
dc.contributor.author Meinen, C. S.
dc.contributor.author Shaw, B.
dc.contributor.author Curry, Ruth G.
dc.date.accessioned 2011-06-13T17:32:57Z
dc.date.available 2011-11-15T09:28:55Z
dc.date.issued 2011-05-15
dc.identifier.citation Journal of Climate 24 (2011): 2429–2449 en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1912/4643
dc.description Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2011. 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 Climate 24 (2011): 2429–2449, doi:10.1175/2010JCLI3997.1. en_US
dc.description.abstract Continuous estimates of the oceanic meridional heat transport in the Atlantic are derived from the Rapid Climate Change–Meridional Overturning Circulation (MOC) and Heatflux Array (RAPID–MOCHA) observing system deployed along 26.5°N, for the period from April 2004 to October 2007. The basinwide meridional heat transport (MHT) is derived by combining temperature transports (relative to a common reference) from 1) the Gulf Stream in the Straits of Florida; 2) the western boundary region offshore of Abaco, Bahamas; 3) the Ekman layer [derived from Quick Scatterometer (QuikSCAT) wind stresses]; and 4) the interior ocean monitored by “endpoint” dynamic height moorings. The interior eddy heat transport arising from spatial covariance of the velocity and temperature fields is estimated independently from repeat hydrographic and expendable bathythermograph (XBT) sections and can also be approximated by the array. The results for the 3.5 yr of data thus far available show a mean MHT of 1.33 ± 0.40 PW for 10-day-averaged estimates, on which time scale a basinwide mass balance can be reasonably assumed. The associated MOC strength and variability is 18.5 ± 4.9 Sv (1 Sv ≡ 106 m3 s−1). The continuous heat transport estimates range from a minimum of 0.2 to a maximum of 2.5 PW, with approximately half of the variance caused by Ekman transport changes and half caused by changes in the geostrophic circulation. The data suggest a seasonal cycle of the MHT with a maximum in summer (July–September) and minimum in late winter (March–April), with an annual range of 0.6 PW. A breakdown of the MHT into “overturning” and “gyre” components shows that the overturning component carries 88% of the total heat transport. The overall uncertainty of the annual mean MHT for the 3.5-yr record is 0.14 PW or about 10% of the mean value. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship This research was supported by the U.S. National Science Foundation under Awards OCE0241438 and OCE0728108, by the U.K. RAPID Programme (RAPID Grant NER/T/S/2002/00481), and by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, as part of its Western Boundary Time Series Program. en_US
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher American Meteorological Society en_US
dc.relation.uri http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/2010JCLI3997.1
dc.subject Atlantic Ocean en_US
dc.subject Meridonial overturning circulation en_US
dc.subject Sea surface temperature en_US
dc.subject Transport en_US
dc.subject Anomalies en_US
dc.title Continuous, array-based estimates of Atlantic Ocean heat transport at 26.5°N en_US
dc.type Article en_US
dc.identifier.doi 10.1175/2010JCLI3997.1

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