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Submesoscale dynamics in the heart of the Baltic Sea: High-resolution model reveals new insights

10.03.2021 12:00

Satellite photo of the Baltic Sea in the area of the island of Gotland with clearly visible blue-green algae blooms
Ocean dynamics filaments, fronts and eddies no larger than 1 to 10 km can cause nutrient transport into the surface water and thus trigger such blue-green algae blooms as shown here around the Baltic Sea island Gotland. (Photo: IOW / MODIS)

With the help of highly resolved realistic model simulations physicists at the IOW have succeeded in depicting the so-called submesoscale dynamics in the Eastern Gotland Basin – the deepest of the large basins of the central Baltic Sea. Thus, the researchers gained the opportunity to investigate these highly dynamic phenomena, which – although being known for decades through satellite images – are up to now only scarcely studied and poorly understood because of their small size and short-lived nature. The model results confirm that submesoscale processes play an important role in the heart of the Baltic Sea in terms of both, energy balance and ecology.

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