Mesoscale Variability of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current: Results from the SubAntarctic Flux and Dynamics Experiment Moored Array

Alan D Chave 2 (508 457 2833;
James G Richman 1 (541 737 3328;

1College of Oceanic & Atmospheric Sciences Oregon State University Ocean Admin Bldg 104, Corvallis, OR 97331-5503, United States
2Department of Geology & Geophysics Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Woods Hole, MA 02543, United States

An array of moored current meters, horizontal electric field recorders and inverted echo sounders was deployed from March 1995 to March 1997 in the SubAntarctic Front (SAF)southwes of Tasmania, Auatralia as part of the SubAntarctic Flux and Dynamics Experiment (SAFDE). The flow is vertically coherent from 500 m to 4000 m. At 2000 m the mean flow for the two years exceeds 6 cm/s with eddy amplitudes in excess of 25 cm/s. At 2000 m, the eddy momentum flux is convergent on the mean jet of the SAF. The temporal and spatial scales of the variability are similar to those found by Bryden and Heath (1985) in the SAF southwest of New Zealand. The mesocale variability at the SAFDE array is comparable to the New Zealand and Drake Passage morred observations