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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-2019-8
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-2019-8
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 15 Mar 2019

Research article | 15 Mar 2019

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Ocean Science (OS).

Seasonal variability of intermediate water masses in the Gulf of Cadiz: implications of the Antarctic and Subarctic seesaw model

David Roque1, Ivan Parras-Berrocal2, Miguel Bruno2, Ricardo Sánchez-Leal3, and Francisco Javier Hernández-Molina4 David Roque et al.
  • 1Institute of Marine Sciences of Andalusia (ICMAN-CSIC), University Campus Rio San Pedro. Puerto Real, Cádiz 11510, Spain
  • 2Applied Physics Department, University of Cádiz, Puerto Real, Cádiz 11130, Spain
  • 3Spanish Institute of Oceanography (IEO), Cádiz Oceanographic Centre, Muelle de Levante, Puerto Pesquero, Cádiz 11006, Spain
  • 4Department of Earth Sciences, Royal Holloway, University of London, Egham, Surrey TW20 0EX, UK

Abstract. Global circulation of intermediate water masses has been extensively studied; however, its regional and local circulation along continental margins and variability and implications on sea floor morphologies are still not well known. In this study the intermediate water mass variability in the Gulf of Cádiz and adjacent areas has been analysed and its implications discussed. Remarkable seasonal variations of the Antarctic Intermediate Water (AAIW) and the Subarctic Intermediate Water (SAIW) are determined. During autumn a greater presence of the AAIW seems to be related to a reduction in the presence of SAIW and Eastern North Atlantic Central Water (ENACW). This interaction also affects the Mediterranean Outflow Water (MOW), which is pushed by the AAIW toward the upper continental slope. In the rest of the seasons, the SAIW is the predominant water mass reducing the presence of the AAIW. This seasonal variability for the predominance of these intermediate water masses is explained by a novel model based on the concatenation of several wind-driven processes acting during the different seasons. Our finding is important for a better understanding of regional intermediate water mass variability with implications in the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) but further research is needed in order to decode their changes during the geological past and their role, especially related to the AAIW, in controlling both the morphology and the sedimentation along the continental slopes.

David Roque et al.
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Short summary
Global circulation of intermediate water masses has been extensively studied; however, its regional and local circulation along continental margins and variability and implications on sea floor morphologies are still not well known. In this study the intermediate water mass variability in the Gulf of Cádiz and adjacent areas has been analysed and its implications discussed. Remarkable seasonal variations of the Antarctic Intermediate Water and the Subarctic Intermediate Water are determined.
Global circulation of intermediate water masses has been extensively studied; however, its...
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