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Modelling study of nutrients cycles in the North Atlantic Ocean

Posted on:1996-03-08Degree:Ph.DType:Thesis
University:McGill University (Canada)Candidate:Su, LinFull Text:PDF
GTID:2460390014488585Subject:Biological oceanography
We have coupled a 3-dimensional physical planetary geostrophic ocean general circulation model to different biological models to investigate the interaction between physical and biological processes. A 1-dimensional particle cycle model with two particle size classes has been developed and coupled to the physical model as well.;The ocean model (Zhang et al., 1992) is based on the planetary geostrophic equations in spherical coordinates. The model equations include the full prognostic temperature and salinity equations. The momentum equations are diagnostic and include geostrophic balance, and a linear friction term in order to provide a western boundary current. The wind stress is applied at the top level of the model. The temperature and salinity distributions used in the surface boundary restoring condition are taken from climatological data. The model domain consists of a flat-bottomed box of 60;The physical model is first coupled to a biological model where new production is given by a restoring condition of surface nitrate towards its observed concentration. The coupled model is used to examine Martin et al.'s (1987) hypothesis that lateral transport and decomposition of slow or non-sinking organic matter can cause a non-local balance between the remineralization rate and the overlying new production rate in open ocean regions. The role of the Gulf Stream in nutrient transport is examined. The model results agree well with the North Atlantic nutrient transport calculated from observed nutrients and hydrographic data. The model results suggest that the thermohaline overturning circulation and the Gulf Stream horizontal recirculation play an important role in the North Atlantic nutrient distribution.;The physical model is then tested in the seasonal mode, and coupled with a biological model which is based on nitrate limiting the rate of new production. The model simulated seasonal oxygen cycle agrees well with the results of observational studies and 1-dimensional model simulations. The oxygen utilization rate below the euphotic zone provides a useful estimate of new production.;A 1-dimensional time dependent particle cycling model with two particle size classes based on Clegg and Whitfield (1990) is then developed. The simulated total organic carbon concentration and large particle flux are consistent with observations and other 1-dimensional model simulations. The downward transport of organic carbon is mainly accomplished by the fast sinking large particles, which comprise a small fraction of the total particulate mass. The steady state version of the particle model is also coupled with the 3-dimensional physical model. The magnitudes of simulated organic carbon flux and total organic matter concentration are comparable with observations.
Keywords/Search Tags:Physical, Biological, North atlantic, Model with two particle size, Organic carbon, Coupled, Two particle size classes, Organic matter
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