Assessing the Stability of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation of the Past, Present, and Future

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  • Funds:

    Supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41130105) and National (Key) Basic Research and Development (973) Program of China (2012CB955203).

  • doi: 10.1007/s13351-014-4006-6

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  • This paper is a review of the recent development of researches on the stability of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC). In particular, we will review recent studies that attempt to best assess the stability of the AMOC in the past, present, and future by using a stability indicator related to the freshwater transport by the AMOC. These studies further illustrate a potentially systematic bias in the state-of-the-art atmosphere-ocean general circulation models (AOGCMs), in which the AMOCs seem to be over-stabilized relative to that in the real world. This common model bias in the AMOC stability is contributed, partly, to a common tropical bias associated with the double intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ) in most state-of-the-art AOGCMs, casting doubts on future projection of abrupt climate changes in these climate models.
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    沈阳化工大学材料科学与工程学院 沈阳 110142

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Assessing the Stability of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation of the Past, Present, and Future

  • 1. Scripps Institution of Oceanography,University of California,San Diego,La Jolla,CA 92093,USA;
    Laboratory of Climate,Ocean,and Atmosphere Studies,Peking University,Beijing 100081,China;
    Center for Climatic Research,University of Wisconsin-Madison,Madison,WI 53706,USA
Funds: Supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41130105) and National (Key) Basic Research and Development (973) Program of China (2012CB955203).

Abstract: This paper is a review of the recent development of researches on the stability of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC). In particular, we will review recent studies that attempt to best assess the stability of the AMOC in the past, present, and future by using a stability indicator related to the freshwater transport by the AMOC. These studies further illustrate a potentially systematic bias in the state-of-the-art atmosphere-ocean general circulation models (AOGCMs), in which the AMOCs seem to be over-stabilized relative to that in the real world. This common model bias in the AMOC stability is contributed, partly, to a common tropical bias associated with the double intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ) in most state-of-the-art AOGCMs, casting doubts on future projection of abrupt climate changes in these climate models.

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