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Title: Mechanisms Governing the Development of the North Atlantic Warming Hole in the CESM-LE Future Climate Simulations

Abstract

A warming deficit in North Atlantic sea surface temperatures is a striking feature in global climate model future projections. This North Atlantic warming hole has been related to a slowing of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC); however, the detailed mechanisms involved in its generation remain an open question. An analysis of the Community Earth System Model Large Ensemble simulations is conducted to obtain further insight into the development of the warming hole and its relationship to the AMOC. It is shown that increasing freshwater fluxes through the Arctic gates lead to surface freshening and reduced Labrador Sea deep convection, which in turn act to cool Labrador Sea sea surface temperatures. Furthermore, the resulting changes in surface ocean circulation lead to enhanced transport of cooled Labrador Sea surface waters into the interior of the subpolar gyre and a more zonal orientation of the North Atlantic Current. As a result, there is an increase in ocean advective heat flux divergence within the center of the subpolar gyre, causing this warming deficit in North Atlantic sea surface temperatures. These local changes to the ocean circulation affect the AMOC and lead to its slowdown.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [2];  [3]
  1. Department of Meteorology and Atmospheric Science, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania, and Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, New York, New York
  2. Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Columbia University, New York, New York
  3. Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, New York, New York
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Columbia Univ., New York, NY (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC)
OSTI Identifier:
1457832
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1541845
Grant/Contract Number:  
SC0014423
Resource Type:
Published Article
Journal Name:
Journal of Climate
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Journal of Climate Journal Volume: 31 Journal Issue: 15; Journal ID: ISSN 0894-8755
Publisher:
American Meteorological Society
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; Meteorology & Atmospheric Sciences

Citation Formats

Gervais, Melissa, Shaman, Jeffrey, and Kushnir, Yochanan. Mechanisms Governing the Development of the North Atlantic Warming Hole in the CESM-LE Future Climate Simulations. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-17-0635.1.
Gervais, Melissa, Shaman, Jeffrey, & Kushnir, Yochanan. Mechanisms Governing the Development of the North Atlantic Warming Hole in the CESM-LE Future Climate Simulations. United States. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-17-0635.1.
Gervais, Melissa, Shaman, Jeffrey, and Kushnir, Yochanan. Wed . "Mechanisms Governing the Development of the North Atlantic Warming Hole in the CESM-LE Future Climate Simulations". United States. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-17-0635.1.
@article{osti_1457832,
title = {Mechanisms Governing the Development of the North Atlantic Warming Hole in the CESM-LE Future Climate Simulations},
author = {Gervais, Melissa and Shaman, Jeffrey and Kushnir, Yochanan},
abstractNote = {A warming deficit in North Atlantic sea surface temperatures is a striking feature in global climate model future projections. This North Atlantic warming hole has been related to a slowing of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC); however, the detailed mechanisms involved in its generation remain an open question. An analysis of the Community Earth System Model Large Ensemble simulations is conducted to obtain further insight into the development of the warming hole and its relationship to the AMOC. It is shown that increasing freshwater fluxes through the Arctic gates lead to surface freshening and reduced Labrador Sea deep convection, which in turn act to cool Labrador Sea sea surface temperatures. Furthermore, the resulting changes in surface ocean circulation lead to enhanced transport of cooled Labrador Sea surface waters into the interior of the subpolar gyre and a more zonal orientation of the North Atlantic Current. As a result, there is an increase in ocean advective heat flux divergence within the center of the subpolar gyre, causing this warming deficit in North Atlantic sea surface temperatures. These local changes to the ocean circulation affect the AMOC and lead to its slowdown.},
doi = {10.1175/JCLI-D-17-0635.1},
journal = {Journal of Climate},
number = 15,
volume = 31,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {8}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record
DOI: 10.1175/JCLI-D-17-0635.1

Citation Metrics:
Cited by: 2 works
Citation information provided by
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