RAPID-WATCH Home A a directed programme for NERC

Related Papers


Monitoring the Atlantic Overturning Circulation at 26°N

PI: Stuart Cunningham, NOC, Southampton.

In Phase I of RAPID a prototype system of oceanic moorings was designed and deployed to provide continuous daily measurements of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (MOC). In Phase II the system of moorings (see below) will be maintained until 2014 to provide decade-long timeseries of the MOC.

Location of 26N moorings

The basin-scale monitoring system uses top-to-bottom temperature, salinity and bottom pressure measurements o the Bahamas, south of the Canaries and both sides of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. From these measurements it is possible to to define the full depth, basin-scale mid-ocean geostrophic circulation on a daily basis. The data are combined with electromagnetic cable measurements of Gulf Stream ow through Florida Strait and wind-driven Ekman surface layer transport from NCEP and QuikScat climatologies to give daily estimates of the overturning circulation.

Time series of MOC components from 2004 to 2008
North-south flow across 26°N showing the four flow components measured by the RAPID monitoring system and ancillary data. Negative values represent southward flow.

Link to Project Home Page

Related Links