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Understanding the structure of the subtropical thermocline

Polton, Jeff A.; Marshall, David P.. 2003 Understanding the structure of the subtropical thermocline. Journal of Physical Oceanography, 33 (6). 1240-1249. 10.1175/1520-0485(2003)033<1240:UTSOTS>2.0.CO;2

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Abstract/Summary

Closing a gyre with a western boundary current imposes a constraint on its vertical structure that requires there to be no net vertical flux of potential vorticity through any closed pressure contour in steady state. This constraint resembles the traditional similarity balance for the internal thermocline, with additional terms representing friction in the western boundary current and convection in the mixed layer. The terms in the integral constraint are diagnosed in a planetary geostrophic ocean model and are used to understand the coexistence of ventilated and internal thermoclines within the subtropical gyre

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1175/1520-0485(2003)033<1240:UTSOTS>2.0.CO;2
Programmes: Other/Admin
ISSN: 0022-3670
Additional Keywords: VENTILATED THERMOCLINE; POTENTIAL VORTICITY; GYRES
NORA Subject Terms: Marine Sciences
Date made live: 13 Dec 2011 16:49
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/16031

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