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Ocean Science An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-2017-99
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Research article
15 Dec 2017
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Ocean Science (OS).
On the Role of the North Equatorial Counter Current in Transporting Heat during a Strong El Niño
David J. Webb National Oceanography Centre, Southampton SO14 3ZH, U.K.
Abstract. An analysis of archived data from the Nemo 1/12th degree global ocean model shows the importance of the NECC in the development of the 1982-83 El Niño. The model results indicate that heat transport by the NECC is usually restricted by a combination of Ekman transport, geostrophic inflow and tropical instability waves. During the development of an El Niño these may be reduced near to and to the west of the region of increased atmospheric convection in the Pacific. This allows increased heat transport eastwards by the NECC which in turn may move the atmospheric convection further east across the Pacific Ocean.
Citation: Webb, D. J.: On the Role of the North Equatorial Counter Current in Transporting Heat during a Strong El Niño, Ocean Sci. Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/os-2017-99, in review, 2017.
David J. Webb
David J. Webb
David J. Webb

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Short summary
This paper is concerned with ocean heat transport during the 1982–83 El Nino. It was prompted by a desire to learn more about El Ninos and a suspicion that our understanding of what happens in the ocean at this time is poor. I made use of archive data from a high resolution global ocean model and found that most heat was transported by the North Equatorial Counter Current and not along the Equator as is normally supposed. The physics behind the year to year changes is also investigated.
This paper is concerned with ocean heat transport during the 1982–83 El Nino. It was prompted by...
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