On the Nordic Seas’ role in the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation
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In the present climate, the North Atlantic thermohaline circulation (THC) plays a fundamental role in the global transport of heat at high latitudes. The response of the North Atlantic Ocean-Nordic Seas THC to surface forcing and basin geometries in an idealized one-hemisphere basin is analyzed to better understand the processes that are fundamental to the modeled circulation. Focusing on the dynamics of the Nordic Seas, analytical and numerical modeling highlight the relevance of a sill (Greenland-Scotland Ridge) in setting the properties of the water masses formed in and exported from a marginal sea. Finally, the influence of the convective activity in the Greenland Sea for the overflow, and thus the overturning, is assessed using hydrographic data (from 1950 to present), a regional ocean model, and a unique tracer release experiment. Greenland Sea Gyre water is estimated to contribute less than 1 Sv, and there is no evidence for causality between changes in the Greenland Sea and the overflow.
Paper I: Iovino, D.; Eldevik, T., 2007, Fundamental aspects of the thermohaline gyre circulation in an idealized North Atlantic Ocean. Submitted version.Paper II: Journal of Marine Research 66(3), Iovino, D.; Straneo, F.; Spall, M. A., On the effect of a sill on dense water formation in a marginal sea, pp. 325-345. Published by Yale University. Submitted version. The published version is available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1357/002224008786176016Paper III: Eldevik, T.; Nilsen, J. E. Ø.; Iovino, D.; Olsson, K. A.; Sandø, A. B., 2007, The Greenland Sea does not control the overflows feeding the Atlantic conveyor. Draft.