The meridional heat transport in the ocean is computed according to the data of zonal sections of the World Ocean Circulation Experiment made in the North Atlantic in 1992–1998. We perform the generalized analysis of the estimates of meridional heat transport obtained by different authors by direct methods on the basis of the data of sections made between 7.5 and 48°N in the second half of the last century. The meridional heat transport averaged over the entire period of observations attains its maximum (1.38 ± 0.19 PW) in the Subtropical Atlantic. The meridional heat transport is characterized by fairly intense seasonal variability. Its maximum (about 1.9 PW) is observed in the Subtropical Atlantic at the end of summer and its minimum (about 0.8 PW) is attained at the end of winter. A significant trend toward the intensification of meridional heat transport is revealed near 36°N in 1959–1993 (from 0.75 to 1.1 PW). This is an indication of the intensification of meridional oceanic circulation in the North Atlantic.
Physical Oceanography – Springer Journals
Published: May 13, 2007
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