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The Impact of Polynyas on the Stability of the Thermohaline Circulation as Simulated in a Coupled Ocean-Atmosphere-Sea Ice Box Model

Citation

Grigg, SB and Holbrook, NJ, The Impact of Polynyas on the Stability of the Thermohaline Circulation as Simulated in a Coupled Ocean-Atmosphere-Sea Ice Box Model, Geophysical Research Letters, 28, (5) pp. 767-770. ISSN 0094-8276 (2001) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1029/2000GL011982

Abstract

This study uses a box model of the North Atlantic Ocean to test the stability of the thermohaline circulation under two different climatic regimes: A warmer regime where deepwater formation occurs through open ocean convection, and a cooler regime where deepwater formation occurs with the aid of brine rejectioin from sea ice formation. We find that the brine rejection mechanism produces a more stable modeled thermohaline circulation than the open ocean convection mechanism, i.e. a circulation which is able to withstand a larger high latitude freshwater perturbation. These results demonstrate that the effects of leads and polynyas on brine rejection rates are important and suggest that the presence of open water within modeled sea ice contributes significantly to the sensitivity of the climate response and cannot easily be ignored.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Oceanography
Research Field:Physical Oceanography
Objective Division:Environment
Objective Group:Climate and Climate Change
Objective Field:Social Impacts of Climate Change and Variability
UTAS Author:Holbrook, NJ (Professor Neil Holbrook)
ID Code:52574
Year Published:2001
Web of Science® Times Cited:7
Deposited By:Geography and Environmental Studies
Deposited On:2008-08-01
Last Modified:2011-10-06
Downloads:0

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