Labrador Sea
12.08.2022 - 15.09.2022
Chief scientist:
Johannes Karstensen

The cruise M184 will carry out measure-ments in the Subpolar North Atlantic, more specifically in the Labrador Sea, and which will contribute to studies related to better understanding circulation elements and drivers for the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC). Moored instrumentation will be recovered and deployed. In addition, ship-based measurements are carried out (CTD, ADCP, rosette bottle sample analysis). In specific regions, high-resolution data will be acquired with underwater gliders and ship-based measurements to characterize sub-mesoscale dynamics.

The North Atlantic Ocean is an important driver for the global ocean circulation and its variability on time scales beyond interannual. It could be shown that global climate variability is to a large extent correlated with changes in the North Atlantic sea surface state. The climate of Europe is strongly influenced by the North Atlantic Ocean circulation, in particular the eastward transport of warm water with the North Atlantic Current has a strong impact on the mild winters in Northern Europe.
Intense cooling in winter make the surface water more dense and drives a sinking of the water. The water that has been transferred from surface to great depth spreads preferentially southward, concentrated in intense currents. Most prominent is the “Deep Western Boundary Currents” (DWBC) that transports water ventilated water masses in a well defined current southward.
The scientific program of the METEOR M184 expedition is dedicated to the studies on the intensity of the water mass transformation and the southward transport in the DWBC.