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Rapid Water Transport by Long-Lasting Modon Eddy Pairs in the Southern Midlatitude Oceans

Hughes, Christopher; Miller, Peter I.. 2018 Rapid Water Transport by Long-Lasting Modon Eddy Pairs in the Southern Midlatitude Oceans. Geophysical Research Letters, 44 (24). 12,375-12,384. https://doi.org/10.1002/2017GL075198

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Abstract/Summary

Water in the ocean is generally carried with the mean flow, mixed by eddies, or transported westward by coherent eddies at speeds close to the long baroclinic Rossby wave speed. Modons (dipole eddy pairs) are a theoretically predicted exception to this behavior, which can carry water to the east or west at speeds much larger than the Rossby wave speed, leading to unusual transports of heat, nutrients, and carbon. We provide the first observational evidence of such rapidly moving modons propagating over large distances. These modons are found in the midlatitude oceans around Australia, with one also seen in the South Atlantic west of the Agulhas region. They can travel at more than 10 times the Rossby wave speed of 1–2 cm s−1 and typically persist for about 6 months carrying their unusual water mass properties with them, before splitting into individual vortices, which can persist for many months longer.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): https://doi.org/10.1002/2017GL075198
ISSN: 00948276
Date made live: 28 Feb 2018 15:30 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/519425

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