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Sensitivity of Southern Ocean circulation to wind stress changes: Role of relative wind stress

Munday, D.R.; Zhai, X.. 2015 Sensitivity of Southern Ocean circulation to wind stress changes: Role of relative wind stress. Ocean Modelling, 95. 15-24. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ocemod.2015.08.004

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This article has been accepted for publication and will appear in a revised form in Ocean Modelling, published by Elsevier. Copyright Elsevier.
Sensitivity of Southern Ocean circulation to wind stress changes AAM.pdf - Accepted Version

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Abstract/Summary

The influence of different wind stress bulk formulae on the response of the Southern Ocean circulation to wind stress changes is investigated using an idealised channel model. Surface/mixed layer properties are found to be sensitive to the use of the relative wind stress formulation, where the wind stress depends on the difference between the ocean and atmosphere velocities. Previous work has highlighted the surface eddy damping effect of this formulation, which we find leads to increased circumpolar transport. Nevertheless the transport due to thermal wind shear does lose sensitivity to wind stress changes at sufficiently high wind stress. In contrast, the sensitivity of the meridional overturning circulation is broadly the same regardless of the bulk formula used due to the adiabatic nature of the relative wind stress damping. This is a consequence of the steepening of isopycnals offsetting the reduction in eddy diffusivity in their contribution to the eddy bolus overturning, as predicted using a residual mean framework.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ocemod.2015.08.004
Programmes: BAS Programmes > BAS Programmes 2015 > Polar Oceans
ISSN: 1463-5003
Additional Keywords: ocean modelling, relative wind stress, wind forcing, eddy saturation, eddy compensation
Date made live: 15 Sep 2015 10:58 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/510434

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