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Evidence for Large-Scale Eddy-Driven Gyres in the North Atlantic

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Science  18 Jul 1997:
Vol. 277, Issue 5324, pp. 361-364
DOI: 10.1126/science.277.5324.361

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Abstract

Analysis of a recent climatological database for the North Atlantic has detailed an extensive large-scale recirculation system in the intermediate waters of the North Atlantic basin. The pressure fields that define this recirculation, coupled with the potential vorticity fields associated with the recirculating flow, provide observational evidence for basin-scale eddy-driven flow in the global ocean. The recirculations are intimately tied to the waters carried southward by the Deep Western Boundary Current and are therefore likely to affect the distribution of climatic anomalies in the North Atlantic.

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