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Overturning circulation driven by breaking internal waves in the deep ocean

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Nikurashin, M and Ferrari, R (2013) Overturning circulation driven by breaking internal waves in the deep ocean. Geophysical Research Letters, 40. pp. 1-5. ISSN 0094-8276

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Abstract

A global estimate of the water-mass transformation by
internal wave-driven mixing in the deep ocean is presented.
The estimate is based on the energy conversion from tidal
and geostrophic motions into internal waves combined with
a turbulent mixing parameterization. We show that internal
wave-driven mixing in the deep ocean can sustain 20–30 Sv
of water-mass transformation. One third or more of
this transformation is attributed to lee waves generated
by geostrophic motions flowing over rough topography,
primarily in the Southern Ocean. While these results are
uncertain due to many assumptions, poorly constrained
parameters and data noise that enter in the calculation, the
result that lee wave-driven mixing plays an important role
in the abyssal ocean circulation is likely robust. The
implication is that lee wave-driven mixing should be
represented in ocean and climate models, but currently
it is not. Citation: Nikurashin, M., and R. Ferrari (2013),
Overturning circulation driven by breaking internal waves in the
deep ocean, Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, doi:10.1002/grl.50542.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Geophysical Research Letters
Page Range: pp. 1-5
ISSN: 0094-8276
Identification Number - DOI: 10.1002/grl.50542
Additional Information:

Copyright 2013 AGU

Date Deposited: 02 Sep 2013 01:15
Last Modified: 19 Dec 2014 01:35
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