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Forcing of the overturning circulation across a circumpolar channel by internal wave breaking

Broadbridge, M. B., Naveira Garabato, A. C. and Nurser, A. J. G. (2016) Forcing of the overturning circulation across a circumpolar channel by internal wave breaking. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 121 (8). pp. 5436-5451. ISSN 2169-9291

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1002/2015JC011597


The hypothesis that the impingement of mesoscale eddy flows on small-scale topography regulates diapycnal mixing and meridional overturning across the deep Southern Ocean is assessed in an idealized model. The model simulates an eddying circumpolar current coupled to a double-celled meridional overturning with properties broadly resembling those of the Southern Ocean circulation and represents lee wave-induced diapycnal mixing using an online formulation grounded on wave radiation theory. The diapycnal mixing generated by the simulated eddy field is found to play a major role in sustaining the lower overturning cell in the model, and to underpin a significant sensitivity of this cell to wind forcing. The vertical structure of lower overturning is set by mesoscale eddies, which propagate the effects of near-bottom diapycnal mixing by displacing isopycnals vertically.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:No Reading authors. Back catalogue items
ID Code:68217
Publisher:American Geophysical Union


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