On Gulf Stream Variability, Atmospheric Forcing and the Meridional Overturning Circulation

Dr. Claude Frankignoul
Professeur à l'Université Pierre et Marie Curie
Membre de l'Institut Universitaire de France


Date: September 30, 2003
Time: 3:00 pm
Location: Carriage House, Quissett Campus


The main mode of interannual variability of the Gulf Stream path is a latitudinal shift that largely reflects changes in the North Atlantic Oscillation. It will be shown that, during the EC PREDICATE program, this variability was generally well simulated by oceanic general circulation models forced by observed air-sea fluxes, although the models show a stronger coupling between barotropic and baroclinic response than can be inferred from the observations. The possible link with the variability of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation will also be discussed.


Claude Frankignoul is a physical oceanographer. He received his PhD from the University of Liège, Belgium, and has been a professor at the Université Pierre et Marie Curie since 1982, and a senior member of the Institut universitaire de France since 2000. He has previously worked at MIT, the Max Planck Institut für Meteorologie, WHOI and the University of Liège. He is also an adjunct scientist at WHOI in the P.O. Department.