Atlantic Meridional HT


To provide quarterly reports on the state of the oceans meridional oceanic heat transport in the Atlantic Ocean. This heat transport is directly related to the role that this basin plays in the meridional overturning circulation (MOC) and is an important benchmark for integrated air-sea fluxes and numerical model performance.

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AOML collects XBT data on two lines spanning the subtropical oceans: in the North Atlantic since 1995 along AX7 running between Spain and Miami, Florida and in the South Atlantic since 2002 along AX18 between Cape Town, South Africa and Buenos Aires, Argentina. These data capture the upper limb of the MOC transport.

High-density Atlantic XBT lines
  • North Atlantic Section: AX7 where poleward heat transport is near a maximum.
  • South Atlantic Section:AX18 where heat transport is highly variable and uncertain, including influences from the Indian and Pacific Oceans.

  • Quarterly Reports

    1. Heat transport variability is estimated from data collected along two high density XBT lines operated by AOML, satellite data (altimeter and the scatterometer), wind products from the NCEP reanalysis and products from general circulation models.

    2. "State of the ocean" quarterly estimates of meridional oceanic heat transport through the center of the subtropical gyres in the North and South Atlantic. These Quarterly Reports are posted here.