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Sensitivity of marine heatwave metrics to ocean model resolution


Pilo, GS and Holbrook, NJ and Kiss, AE and Hogg, AMC, Sensitivity of marine heatwave metrics to ocean model resolution, Geophysical Research Letters pp. 1-9. ISSN 0094-8276 (2019) [Refereed Article]

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DOI: doi:10.1029/2019GL084928


Sustained extreme temperature events in the ocean, referred to as marine heatwaves (MHWs), generate substantial ecological, social, and economic impacts. Ocean models provide insights to the drivers, persistence, and dissipation of MHWs. However, the sensitivity of MHW metrics to ocean model resolution is unknown. Here, we analyze global MHW metrics in three configurations of a global ocean‐sea ice model at coarse (1), eddy‐permitting (0.25), and eddy‐rich (0.1) resolutions. We show that all configurations qualitatively represent broad‐scale global patterns of MHWs. These simulated MHWs are, however, weaker, longer‐lasting, and less frequent than in observations. The 0.1 configuration, despite local biases, performs best both globally and regionally. Based on these results, model projections of future MHW metrics using coarse‐resolution models are expected to be biased toward weaker and less frequent MHWs, when compared with results using an eddy‐rich model.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:global ocean-sea ice model, marine heatwave, model resolution, temperature extremes
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Oceanography
Research Field:Physical Oceanography
Objective Division:Environment
Objective Group:Climate and Climate Change
Objective Field:Climate Variability (excl. Social Impacts)
UTAS Author:Pilo, GS (Miss Gabriela Semolini Pilo)
UTAS Author:Holbrook, NJ (Professor Neil Holbrook)
ID Code:136698
Year Published:2019
Deposited By:Oceans and Cryosphere
Deposited On:2020-01-14
Last Modified:2020-01-16

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