Ocean Circulation and Currents
OSD is leading and/or collaborating in observational and numerical modeling studies aimed at describing, understanding and predicting ocean currents and circulation, with focus on the NW Atlantic and Arctic Oceans. The studies are investigating currents on spatial scales ranging from these ocean basins, to topographic features of the continental shelf and slope (described here), to nearshore embayments (see Coastal Zone).
The results of these studies are being used to address issues ranging from climate change, oil and gas development, ecosystem productivity, search–and–rescue operations, and sensitive marine habitat. In many cases, the studies are carried out in collaboration with or with funding from other organizations.
Data from these currents studies are generally available from BIO's Ocean Data Inventory (ODI).
Some of the primary sub-topics being studied are:
- Basin and Global Ocean Hindcasts
- Currents over the NW Atlantic Continental Margin, which are of particular interest to the Labrador Current and deep-water oil and gas exploration.
- Ice and Ocean Variability in the Arctic, which is important to climate variability and operational issues in the Arctic.
- Ocean Mixing Processes, which both affect and depend on ocean currents.
- The Deep Western Boundary Current on the Scotian Rise, which is a key linkage between the North Atlantic's subpolar gyre and the larger-scale Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC).
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