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On the variability of the Mediterranean Outflow Water in the Atlantic Ocean from 1948 to 2006

Title: On the variability of the Mediterranean Outflow Water in the Atlantic Ocean from 1948 to 2006.
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Name(s): Bozec, Alexandra, author
Lozier, M., author
Chassignet, E., author
Halliwell, George, author
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Issuance: serial
Date Issued: 2011
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: Recent work has shown that variability in the properties and/or transport of Mediterranean Seawaters spilling across the Strait of Gibraltar into the North Atlantic have had little impact on the variability of Mediterranean Outflow Water (MOW) in the that basin over the past fifty years. Here we investigate whether circulation changes are the dominant source of MOW variability in the North Atlantic between 1948 and 2006. Using a 1/3° North Atlantic configuration of the HYbrid Coordinate Ocean Model combined with the Marginal Sea Boundary Condition model, two simulations forced by either climatological or interannual atmospheric fields are performed. The interannual simulation reproduces the observed MOW variability without Mediterranean Seawater changes. Thus, we conclude that MOW variability in the last 60 years is a consequence of circulation changes in the North Atlantic. A series of simulations that separate the mechanical effect of the wind from the impact of buoyancy forcing show that MOW variability can be attributed to shifts between its dominant northward and westward pathways. The pathway shifts from predominantly northward between 1950 and 1975 to predominantly westward between 1975 and 1995 and finally back to northward after 1995. Though these pathway shifts appear to be wind-induced, the property changes are caused by the combined impact of wind and buoyancy forcing on the circulation of the North Atlantic.
Identifier: FSU_migr_coaps_pubs-0015 (IID), 10.1029/2011JC007191 (DOI)
Keywords: Mediterranean Outflow Water, North Atlantic Ocean, atmospheric forcing, long-term variability, pathway shifts
Note: An edited version of this paper was published by American Geophysical Union. Copyright (2011) American Geophysical Union.
Citation: Bozec, A., M.S. Lozier, E.P. Chassignet, and G.R. Halliwell (2011), On the variability of the Mediterranean Outflow Water in the Atlantic Ocean from 1948 to 2006, J. Geophys. Res., 116, C09033, doi:10.1029/2011JC007191.
Subject(s): Atmospheric sciences
Meteorology
Oceanography
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fsu/fd/FSU_migr_coaps_pubs-0015
Owner Institution: FSU
Is Part of Series: COAPS Publications.
Is Part Of: Journal of Geophysical Research.

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Bozec, A., Lozier, M., Chassignet, E., & Halliwell, G. (2011). On the variability of the Mediterranean Outflow Water in the Atlantic Ocean from 1948 to 2006. Journal Of Geophysical Research. Retrieved from http://purl.flvc.org/fsu/fd/FSU_migr_coaps_pubs-0015