P06 - Western boundary current systems

Convenor: Marjolaine Krug
Co-Convenors: Amandine Schaeffer, Jonathan Durgadoo, Lionel Renault 

Western Boundary Currents (WBCs) are deep, strong and narrow flows driven by the integrated zonal wind stress over the adjacent basins. These current systems have a major impact on the global meridional circulation through the transport of heat from the tropics to high latitudes. Furthermore, they contribute directly to inter-ocean eddy heat and salt transport in the southern hemisphere. Mid-latitude WBCs and their extensions are regions of strong ocean heat loss and carbon uptake, impacting both regional and global climate on time scales of days to decades. These strong currents and their interaction with complex topography also result in an energetic, often non-linear ocean field, which evolves over a wide range of scales and processes. This presents a great challenge for both modelling studies and observing systems.

This session aims to bring together research on all aspects of WBCs, from observational systems and studies to theoretical and numerical modelling. We encourage presentations on the role WBCs play in the global climate, including their connections with subtropical regions, air/sea coupling processes, carbon uptake, or inter-ocean transport. On smaller scales, we also welcome studies with a focus on energy transfer pathways, frontal dynamic processes or interactions with coastal and shelf ecosystems.