Simulation of oceanic volume transports through Fram Strait 1995–2005
We discuss the model representation of volume transports through one of the most climate-relevant ocean passages, the Fram Strait. We compare results from a coupled ocean–sea ice model with different resolutions (∼1/12° and ∼1/4°) and measurements from a mooring array along 79° N. The 1/4° model delivers a realistic mean climate state and realistic net volume transports. However, this model fails to reproduce the observed intense barotropic recirculation that reaches far north in Fram Strait. This recirculation is captured in the higher resolution version of the model. Other differences exist in the circulation over the East Greenland Shelf and in the temperature of Atlantic waters in the Fram Strait region as well as in surface heat fluxes. We find that a combination of high-resolution model results and long-term measurements can improve the interpretation of measured and simulated processes and reduce the uncertainties in exchange rates between Arctic and the North Atlantic.
KeywordsFram Strait High-resolution ocean model Time series of oceanic volume transport Climate change Arctic MOM-2 Observations
The work reported here has been supported through the EU projects ASOF-N and DAMOCLES as well as the SFB 512 “Cyclones and the North Atlantic climate system” of the DFG. The DAMOCLES project is financed by the European Union in the 6th Framework Program for Research and Development. Forcing data for the model were taken from NCAR/NCEP reanalysis project. We thank Laura de Steur and an anonymous reviewer for constructive comments that were very helpful in improving our manuscript.
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