Scientia Marina, Vol 65, No S1 (2001)

Water masses, circulation and transport in the eastern boundary current of the North Atlantic subtropical gyre


https://doi.org/10.3989/scimar.2001.65s1177

Alonso Hernández-Guerra
Facultad de Ciencias del Mar, Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain

Federico López-Laatzen
Instituto Español de Oceanografía, Spain

Francisco Machín
Facultad de Ciencias del Mar, Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain

Demetrio de Armas
Instituto Español de Oceanografía, Spain

J. L. Pelegrí
Facultad de Ciencias del Mar, Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain

Abstract


CTD sections carried out in September 1998 are used to describe the water masses, geostrophic circulation and mass transport in the easternmost branch of the Canary Current. The surface water mass (< 600 m) consists of North Atlantic Central Water (NACW) flowing south with a net mass transport of 2.3 x 109 kg s-1. A tongue of relatively fresh water, consisting of Antarctic Intermediate Water (AAIW), was found approximately in the 600-1100 m depth layer. This tongue was 200 km wide, stretching from the African coast almost to Gran Canaria Island, and transported a net mass of 1.1 x 109 kg s-1 northward. This system of currents is what constitutes the real eastern boundary current of the North Atlantic Subtropical Gyre.

Keywords


water masses; circulation; transport; eastern boundary current; subtropical gyre

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