- The contribution of the Weddell Gyre to the lower limb of the Global Overturning Circulation doi link

Auteur(s): Jullion L., Naveira Garabato Alberto C., Bacon Sheldon, Meredith Michael P., J. Brown Peter, Torres-Valdés Sinhue, Speer Kevin, Holland Paul, Dong Jun, Bakker Dorothée, Hoppema Mario, Loose Brice, Venables Hugh J., Jenkins William, Messias Marie-José, Fahrbach Eberhard

(Article) Publié: Journal Of Geophysical Research. Oceans, vol. 119 p.3357-3377 (2014)

Ref HAL: hal-01255764_v1
DOI: 10.1002/2013JC009725
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The horizontal and vertical circulation of the Weddell Gyre is diagnosed using a box inverse model constructed with recent hydrographic sections and including mobile sea ice and eddy transports. The gyre is found to convey 42 6 8 Sv (1 Sv 5 106 m3 s–1) across the central Weddell Sea and to intensify to 54 6 15 Sv further offshore. This circulation injects 36 6 13 TW of heat from the Antarctic Circumpolar Current to the gyre, and exports 51 6 23 mSv of freshwater, including 13 6 1 mSv as sea ice to the midlati- tude Southern Ocean. The gyre’s overturning circulation has an asymmetric double-cell structure, in which 13 6 4 Sv of Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW) and relatively light Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW) are trans- formed into upper-ocean water masses by midgyre upwelling (at a rate of 2 6 2 Sv) and into denser AABW by downwelling focussed at the western boundary (8 6 2 Sv). The gyre circulation exhibits a substantial throughflow component, by which CDW and AABW enter the gyre from the Indian sector, undergo ventila- tion and densification within the gyre, and are exported to the South Atlantic across the gyre’s northern rim. The relatively modest net production of AABW in the Weddell Gyre (6 6 2 Sv) suggests that the gyre’s prominence in the closure of the lower limb of global oceanic overturning stems largely from the recycling and equatorward export of Indian-sourced AABW.