Using state-of-the-art ocean robots and scientific sensors attached to seals, researchers in Marine Sciences at the University of Gothenburg have for the first time observed small and energetic ocean currents in the Southern Ocean.
The currents are critical at controlling the amount of heat and carbon moving between the ocean and the atmosphere – information vital for understanding our global climate and how it may change in the future.
Two new studies, one led by Associate Professor Sebastiaan Swart and the other led by Dr Louise Biddle, both working at the University of Gothenburg, use highly novel techniques to collect rare data in the ocean both under and near the sea ice surrounding Antarctica (www.roammiz.com).
These papers present for the first time upper ocean currents of approximately 0.1-10 km in size. These currents, which are invisible to satellite and ship-based data, are seen to interact with strong Southern Ocean storms and with physical processes occurring under sea ice.
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Image via University of Gothenburg