Seasonal oceanic heat transports computed from an atmospheric model

Gary L. Russell, James R. Miller, Lie Ching Tsang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


Seasonal estimates of the oceanic poleward heat transport are obtained using a climate model that is a global atmospheric general circulation model on an 8° × 10° grid. The climate model is used to calculate the surface heat flux into each ocean grid point for each day of the year. The rate of ocean heat storage is calculated using climatological surface temperatures, mixed layer depths, and ice amounts. By assuming that the rate of change of heat storage in the deep ocean is spatially constant, the horizontal transports are calculated from the vertical fluxes and the upper ocean storage rates. The oceanic meridional transport for each latitude and for each ocean basin are derived, and results are compared with other calculations of the seasonal transports. In the Northern Hemisphere, comparisons between the simulated seasonal transports indicate that the annual variation is much greater in the Pacific than in the Atlantic.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)253-271
Number of pages19
JournalDynamics of Atmospheres and Oceans
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 1985

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oceanography
  • Geology
  • Computers in Earth Sciences
  • Atmospheric Science


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