On the Separation of the Brazil Current from the Coast

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  • 1 Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences Program, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey
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Abstract

A series of numerical experiments, using analytical and numerical models, leads to the conclusion that the separation of the Brazil Current from the coast can be related to the northward momentum of the Malvinas Current. Experiments in which the Maivinas Current has a low transport show the Brazil Current separating where the curl of the wind stress vanishes, seven degrees south of the observed separation latitude of 38°S. If, however, the flow distribution at the Drake Passage is adjusted so that the transport of the Malvinas Current is increased, then the model predicts that the latitude where the Brazil Current separates from the coast is near its observed value.

Abstract

A series of numerical experiments, using analytical and numerical models, leads to the conclusion that the separation of the Brazil Current from the coast can be related to the northward momentum of the Malvinas Current. Experiments in which the Maivinas Current has a low transport show the Brazil Current separating where the curl of the wind stress vanishes, seven degrees south of the observed separation latitude of 38°S. If, however, the flow distribution at the Drake Passage is adjusted so that the transport of the Malvinas Current is increased, then the model predicts that the latitude where the Brazil Current separates from the coast is near its observed value.

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