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Review of the physical oceanography of the North Sea
Otto, L.; Zimmerman, J.T.F.; Furnes, G.K.; Mork, M.; Sætre, R.; Becker, G. (1990). Review of the physical oceanography of the North Sea. Neth. J. Sea Res. 26(2-4): 161-238
In: Netherlands Journal of Sea Research. Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ): Groningen; Den Burg. ISSN 0077-7579, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Authors  Top 
  • Otto, L.
  • Zimmerman, J.T.F.
  • Furnes, G.K.
  • Mork, M.
  • Sætre, R.
  • Becker, G.

    After a general consideration of the physical factors that are of special interest to ecology, the typical character of the North Sea is discussed. The emphasis is on the processes that are responsible for the physical environment. The dominant feature is the tidal motion. This is not only a mechanism for vertical and horizontal mixing. The tidal residuals also contribute to a basic circulation pattern that together with the long-term net effects of the wind-driven circulation and the baroclinic effects results in an overall transport that determines the major features of the distribution of the water properties. Superimposed on this there are variations (mainly wind-induced) and regional differences in a wide range of time- and length-scales. Some typical features of both the southern and northern part of the North Sea are discussed. The review is concluded with a discussion on the long-term variations in the physical conditions of the North Sea. These are mainly to changes in temperature, salinity and sea-level.

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