Geothermal heating , diapycnal mixing and the abyssal circulation

  title={Geothermal heating , diapycnal mixing and the abyssal circulation},
  author={Julien Emile-Geay and Gurvan Madec},
The dynamical role of geothermal heating in abyssal circulation is reconsidered using three independent arguments. First, we show that a uniform geothermal heat flux close to the observed average (86.4 mW m −2) supplies as much heat to near-bottom water as a diapycnal mixing rate of ∼10−4 m2 s−1 – the canonical value thought to be responsible for the magnitude of the present-day abyssal circulation. This parity raises the possibility that geothermal heating could have a dynamical impact of the… CONTINUE READING