North Atlantic climate and deep-ocean flow speed changes during the last 230 years

Type Article
Date 2007-07
Language English
Author(s) Boessenkool K. P.1, Hall I. R.1, Elderfield H.2, Yashayaev I.3
Affiliation(s) 1 : Univ Cardiff Wales, Sch Earth Ocean & Planetary Sci, Cardiff CF10 3YE, Wales.
2 : Univ Cambridge, Dept Earth Sci, Cambridge CB2 3EQ, England.
3 : Fisheries & Oceans Canada, Bedford Inst Oceanog, Dartmouth, NS B2Y 4A2, Canada.
Source Geophysical Research Letters (0094-8276) (Amer Geophysical Union), 2007-07 , Vol. 34 , N. 13/L13614 , P. 1-6
DOI 10.1029/2007GL030285
WOS© Times Cited 53
Keyword(s) deep ocean circulation, North Atlantic Oscillation, drift sediments
Abstract Variations in the near-bottom flow speed of Iceland-Scotland Overflow Water (ISOW) are documented in a 230-year-long deep-sea sediment record from the eastern flank of Reykjanes Ridge in the subpolar North Atlantic at (sub) decadal time scales. For recent decades, the ISOW palaeocurrent reconstructions show similarities with observational hydrographic data. Furthermore, recent ISOW flow changes fall mostly within the range of its variability of the past 230 years. The record also reveals a hitherto unrecognized coupling of deep flow speeds in the subpolar North Atlantic with the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) index, with more (less) vigorous ISOW flow during negative (positive) phases of the NAO. Our results suggest that the changes in ISOW vigor are largely controlled by the transport and characteristics of Labrador Sea Water rather than variations in the overflow itself, with implications for the meridional overturning of the Atlantic Ocean and climate.
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