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Deep Ocean Exchange with West-european Shelf Seas : Volume 6, Issue 2 (12/06/2009)

By Huthnance, J. M.

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Book Id: WPLBN0004021039
Format Type: PDF Article :
File Size: Pages 32
Reproduction Date: 2015

Title: Deep Ocean Exchange with West-european Shelf Seas : Volume 6, Issue 2 (12/06/2009)  
Author: Huthnance, J. M.
Volume: Vol. 6, Issue 2
Language: English
Subject: Science, Ocean, Science
Collections: Periodicals: Journal and Magazine Collection (Contemporary), Copernicus GmbH
Publication Date:
Publisher: Copernicus Gmbh, Göttingen, Germany
Member Page: Copernicus Publications


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Wakelin, S. L., Huthnance, J. M., & Holt, J. T. (2009). Deep Ocean Exchange with West-european Shelf Seas : Volume 6, Issue 2 (12/06/2009). Retrieved from

Description: Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory, 6 Brownlow Street, Liverpool L3 5DA, UK. We review mechanisms and studies of exchange between the north-east Atlantic and the adjacent shelf sea. Mechanisms include: well-developed summer upwelling and associated filaments off Portugal and north-west Spain giving exchange O(3 m2/s per unit length of shelf); prevailing westerly winds further north driving exchange O(1 m2/s); poleward flow along most of the upper slope with associated secondary circulation O(1 m2/s); meanders and eddies in this poleward flow; eddies shed from slope waters into the Bay of Biscay; local exchanges at shelf spurs and depressions or canyons (e.g. dense-water cascading of order 1 m2/s). Tidal transports are larger; their reversal every six hours makes exchange largely ineffective except where internal tides are large and non-linear, as in the Celtic Sea where solitons carry water with exchange O(1 m2/s). These various physical exchanges amount to an estimated 2–3 m2/s per unit length of shelf, between ocean and shelf; a numerical model estimate is comparable: 2.5×106 m3/s onto and off the shelf from Brittany to Norway. Mixing controls the seasonal thermocline, affecting primary production and hence fluxes and fate of organic matter. Specifically, CO2 take-up by primary production, settling below the thermocline before respiration, and then off-shelf transport, make an effective shelf-sea pump (for CO2 from the atmosphere to the deep ocean). However, knowledge of biogeochemical fluxes is generally sparse; there is scope for more measurements, model validation and estimates from models.

Deep ocean exchange with west-European shelf seas

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