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Title: Role of air-sea heat flux on the transformation of Atlantic Water encircling the Nordic Seas
Abstract The warm-to-cold densification of Atlantic Water (AW) around the perimeter of the Nordic Seas is a critical component of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC). However, it remains unclear how ongoing changes in air-sea heat flux impact this transformation. Here we use observational data, and a one-dimensional mixing model following the flow, to investigate the role of air-sea heat flux on the cooling of AW. We focus on the Norwegian Atlantic Slope Current (NwASC) and Front Current (NwAFC), where the primary transformation of AW occurs. We find that air-sea heat flux accounts almost entirely for the net cooling of AW along the NwAFC, while oceanic lateral heat transfer appears to dominate the temperature change along the NwASC. Such differing impacts of air-sea interaction, which explain the contrasting long-term changes in the net cooling along two AW branches since the 1990s, need to be considered when understanding the AMOC variability.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
1948505 1756361
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ;
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Nature Communications
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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