Currents of flow bring warmth and cold


Researchers from the Voyeikov Main Geophysical Observatory have studied the connection between changes in the temperature of the ocean surface around the warm current of the Gulf Stream and the cold Labrador Current.

They analysed satellite data from the last 50 years on the temperature of the air and water around the warm and the cold currents. They originated from the fact that thermal flows, carried by the ocean currents, are considerably greater than the thermal flows in the atmosphere. It transpired that the main climatic fluctuation of the Northern Hemisphere in the second half of the 20th Century occurred over several decades and, along the course of the warm current of the Gulf Stream, it coincided completely with changes in the ambient air temperature. Furthermore, a clear link was detected between the ocean surface temperature and the air temperature on land in the adjacent regions. It is possible that the ocean currents are one of the factors of contemporary climate change.