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Rapid Evolution of a Gulf Stream Warm-Core Ring
  • Terrence Joyce, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
  • Richard Backus, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
  • Karen Baker, Scripps Institution of Oceanography
  • Patricia Blackwelder, Nova Southeastern University
  • Otis Brown, University of Miami
  • Timothy Cowles, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
  • Robert Evans, University of Miami
  • Greta Fryxell, Texas A&M University
  • David Mountain, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
  • Donald Olson, University of Miami
  • Ronald Schlitz, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
  • Raymond Schmitt, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
  • Peter Smith, Bedford Institute of Oceanography - Dartmouth, Canada
  • Raymond Smith, University of California - Santa Barbara
  • Peter Wiebe, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
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Gulf Stream warm-core rings form in the Slope Water between the North American continental shelf and the Gulf Stream by the separation of a north-extending meander. The initial physical, chemical and biological properties of the core of these 100–200-km eddies are often similar to those of its parent water mass, the Sargasso Sea. A clockwise rotating remnant of the Gulf Stream circulates around the core with surface current speeds of 50–200 cm s−1. Although warm-core rings can slowly change over periods of months through interactions with the surrounding Slope Water, Gulf Stream meanders, continental slope, other rings, and the atmosphere, we have now discovered that major alterations to ring structure can occur during very short periods (2–5 days) when an interaction with the Gulf Stream is particularly intense. Such short-period interactions between a ring and the Gulf Stream are a major factor governing a ring's evolution.

©1984 Nature Publishing Group

Citation Information
Terrence Joyce, Richard Backus, Karen Baker, Patricia Blackwelder, et al.. "Rapid Evolution of a Gulf Stream Warm-Core Ring" Nature Vol. 308 Iss. 5962 (1984) p. 837 - 840 ISSN: 0028-0836
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