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Parameterization of vertical mixing in the Weddell Sea
Timmermann, R.; Beckmann, A. (2004). Parameterization of vertical mixing in the Weddell Sea. Ocean Modelling 6(1): 83-100. dx.doi.org/10.1016/S1463-5003(02)00061-6
In: Ocean Modelling. Elsevier: Oxford. ISSN 1463-5003, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 231404 [ OMA ]

Keyword
    Marine
Author keywords
    coupled sea ice-ocean model; vertical mixing; parameterization of

Authors  Top 
  • Timmermann, R.
  • Beckmann, A.

Abstract
    A series of vertical mixing schemes implemented in a circumpolar Coupled ice-ocean model of the BRIOS family is validated against observations of hydrography and sea ice coverage in the Weddell Sea. Assessed parameterizations include the Richardson number-dependent Pacanowski-Philander scheme, the Mellor-Yamada turbulent closure scheme, the K-profile parameterization, a bulk mixed layer model and the ocean penetrative plume scheme (OPPS). Combinations of the Pacanowski-Philander parameterization or the OPPS with a simple diagnostic model depending on the Monin-Obukhov length yield particularly good results. In contrast, experiments using a constant diffusivity and the traditional convective adjustment cannot reproduce the observations. An underestimation of wind-driven mixing in summer leads to an accumulation of salt in the winter water layer, inducing deep convection in the central Weddell Sea and a homogenization of the water column. Large upward heat fluxes in these simulations lead to the formation of unrealistic, large polynyas in the central Weddell Sea after only a few years of integration. Furthermore, spurious open-ocean convection affects the basin-scale circulation and leads to a significant overestimation of meridional overturning rates. We conclude that an adequate parameterization of both wind-induced mixing and buoyancy-driven convection is crucial for realistic simulations of processes in seasonally ice-covered seas.

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