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Ocean Science An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union

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© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
06 Jun 2017
Review status
This discussion paper is under review for the journal Ocean Science (OS).
Hydrography and Circulation West of Sardinia in June 2014
Michaela Knoll1, Ines Borrione2, Heinz-Volker Fiekas1, Andreas Funk1, Michael P. Hemming3, Jan Kaiser3, Reiner Onken4, Bastien Queste3, and Aniello Russo2 1Wehrtechnische Dienststelle für Schiffe und Marinewaffen, Maritime Technologie und Forschung (WTD71), Berliner Straße 115, 24340 Eckernförde, Germany
2NATO Science and Technology Organization, Centre for Maritime Research and Experimentation (CMRE), Viale San Bartolomeo 400, 19126 La Spezia, Italy
3Centre for Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences (COAS), School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia (UEA), Norwich Research Park, Norwich, NR4 7TJ, United Kingdom
4Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht, Centre for Materials and Coastal Research (HZG), Max-Planck-Straße 1, 21502 Geesthacht, Germany
Abstract. In the mainframe of the REP14-MED sea trial in June 2014, the hydrography and circulation west of Sardinia, observed by means of gliders, shipborne CTD instruments, towed devices, and vessel-mounted ADCPs, are presented and compared with previous knowledge. So far, the circulation is not well known in this area, and the hydrography is subject to long-term changes. Potential temperature, salinity, and potential density ranges, as well as core values of the observed water masses were determined. Modified Atlantic Water (MAW), with potential density anomalies below 28.72 kg m−3, showed a salinity minimum of 37.93 at 50 dbar. Levantine Intermediate Water (LIW), with a salinity maximum of about 38.70 at 400 dbar, was observed within a range of 28.72 < σΘ [kg m−3] < 29.10. MAW and LIW showed slightly higher salinities than previous investigations. During the trial, LIW covered the whole area from the Sardinian shelf to 7°15' E. Only north of 40° N was it tied to the continental slope. Within the MAW, a cold and saline anticyclonic eddy was observed in the southern trial area. The strongest variability in temperature and salinity appeared around this eddy, and in the southwestern part of the domain, where unusually low saline surface water entered the area towards the end of the experiment. An anticyclonic eddy of Winter Intermediate Water was recorded moving northward at 0.014 m s−1. Geostrophic currents and water mass transports calculated across zonal and meridional transects showed a good agreement with vessel-mounted ADCP measurements. Within the MAW, northward currents were observed over the shelf and offshore, while a southward transport of about 1.5 Sv occurred over the slope. A net northward transport of 0.38 Sv across the southern transect decreased to zero in the north. Within the LIW, northward transport of 0.6 Sv across the southern transects were mainly observed offshore, and decreased to 0.3 Sv in the north where they were primarily located over the slope. This presentation of the REP14-MED observations helps to further understand the long-term evolution of hydrography and circulation in the Western Mediterranean, where considerable changes occurred after the Eastern Mediterranean Transient and the Western Mediterranean Transition.

Citation: Knoll, M., Borrione, I., Fiekas, H.-V., Funk, A., Hemming, M. P., Kaiser, J., Onken, R., Queste, B., and Russo, A.: Hydrography and Circulation West of Sardinia in June 2014, Ocean Sci. Discuss.,, in review, 2017.
Michaela Knoll et al.
Michaela Knoll et al.
Michaela Knoll et al.


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