Ice-ocean processes over the continental shelf of the southern Weddell Sea, Antarctica: A review

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Abstract

[1] Interactions between the Southern Ocean and the Weddell Sea ice shelves are important both to the Antarctic Ice Sheet and to the production of globally significant water masses. Here we review the interaction between the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf and the shelf sea in which it floats. The continental shelf processes leading to the production of Weddell Sea deep and bottom waters from the original off-shelf source waters are discussed, and a new view is offered of the initial production of High-Salinity Shelf Water. Data from ship-based measurements at the ice front, from glaciological methods, and from measurements made within the sub–ice shelf cavity itself are used to describe the pattern of flows beneath the ice shelf. We also consider the variability observed within the cavity from tidal to interannual time scales and finish with a discussion of future research priorities in the region.

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