The southern ocean: Antarctica's northern boundary
Details of Research
TitleThe southern ocean: Antarctica's northern boundaryAbstractThe Southern Ocean totally surrounds Antarctica and, with its cold waters and partial covering of sea ice, it is the maritime component of greater Antarctica. The range of water temperatures in the Southern Ocean is large. Near Antarctica, water can be colder than -2 ^circC, while at the oceans northern limits temperatures can reach 10 ^circC or more. In contrast, there is a small change in salinity across the ocean, but the slight changes in temperature and salinity are enough to set up density gradients that, along with the wind, drive the Southern Ocean currents. The dominant current is the eastward flowing Antarctic Circumpolar Current, the worldÅ› largest current, but smaller westward flowing currents fringe the Antarctic continental shelf. Density gradients also drive vertical circulation where cold, salty, dense waters sink around the margins of Antarctica. This dense water then slowly flows north and is found globally at the bottom of the worldÅ› oceans. This process helps to establish the global ocean circulation that transports heat, moisture and dissolved compounds such as carbon dioxide and oxygen over thousands of kilometres. This chapter explores the significance of the Southern Ocean and its role in global ocean transport and circulation, as they contribute to the global climate system. Copyright Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015. All rights are reserved.AcknowledgementsN/A
TypeBookCitationWilliams, M.J.M. (2015). The Southern Ocean. In: Liggett, D., Storey, B., Cook, Y., and Meduna, V. (eds) Exploring the Last Continent: An Introduction to Antarctica. Springer Berlin Heidelberg.
Antarctica NZ (29th Nov 2018). The southern ocean: Antarctica's northern boundary. In Website Antarctica NZ. Retrieved 4th Mar 2021 17:13, from https://adam.antarcticanz.govt.nz/nodes/view/63815