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L
Lueker, TJ, Walker SJ, Vollmer MK, Keeling RF, Nevison CD, Weiss RF, Garcia HE.  2003.  Coastal upwelling air-sea fluxes revealed in atmospheric observations of O2/N2, CO2 and N2O. Geophysical Research Letters. 30   10.1029/2002gl016615   AbstractWebsite

[1] We capture water column ventilation resulting from coastal upwelling in continuous records of O-2/N-2, CO2, and N2O at Trinidad, California. Our records reveal the gas exchange response time of the ocean to the upwelling and ensuing biological production. Satellite and buoy wind data allow extrapolation of our records to assess coastal upwelling air-sea fluxes of O-2 and N2O. We improve on previous regional estimates of N2O flux in coastal and continental shelf region of the western U. S. We characterize the source of N2O as being predominately from nitrification based on the O-2/N2O emissions ratio observed in our atmospheric records.

M
Min, DH, Bullister JL, Weiss RF.  2002.  Anomalous chlorofluorocarbons in the Southern California Borderland Basins. Geophysical Research Letters. 29   10.1029/2002gl015408   AbstractWebsite

During the past two decades, unexpectedly high concentrations of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) have been observed in the bottom waters of the Southern California Borderland Basins (SCBB), with relatively constant spatial distribution patterns. In contrast to offshore waters in this region, CFC concentrations below the oxygen minimum layer (OML) in the deep SCBB increase with depth. The uniformity of the bottom-enhanced CFC signals and the near-zero levels of tritium suggest that this feature is likely maintained by release of CFCs from sediments and vertical mixing, and not by dumped CFC-bearing materials or an intrusion of recently ventilated waters. We hypothesize that CFC scavenging processes, either on particulate organic matter or hydrocarbon residues from the adjacent natural seeps, occur in these high-productivity near-surface coastal waters. The subsequent release of CFCs at the bottom boundary layer during the degradation of particulate material may cause the anomalous CFC distributions in the SCBB.

Muhle, J, Huang J, Weiss RF, Prinn RG, Miller BR, Salameh PK, Harth CM, Fraser PJ, Porter LW, Greally BR, O'Doherty S, Simmonds PG.  2009.  Sulfuryl fluoride in the global atmosphere. Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres. 114   10.1029/2008jd011162   AbstractWebsite

The first calibrated high-frequency, high-precision, in situ atmospheric and archived air measurements of the fumigant sulfuryl fluoride (SO(2)F(2)) have been made as part of the Advanced Global Atmospheric Gas Experiment (AGAGE) program. The global tropospheric background concentration of SO(2)F(2) has increased by 5 +/- 1% per year from similar to 0.3 ppt (parts per trillion, dry air mol fraction) in 1978 to similar to 1.35 ppt in May 2007 in the Southern Hemisphere, and from similar to 1.08 ppt in 1999 to similar to 1.53 ppt in May 2007 in the Northern Hemisphere. The SO(2)F(2) interhemispheric concentration ratio was 1.13 +/- 0.02 from 1999 to 2007. Two-dimensional 12-box model inversions yield global total and global oceanic uptake atmospheric lifetimes of 36 +/- 11 and 40 +/- 13 years, respectively, with hydrolysis in the ocean being the dominant sink, in good agreement with 35 +/- 14 years from a simple oceanic uptake calculation using transfer velocity and solubility. Modeled SO2F2 emissions rose from similar to 0.6 Gg/a in 1978 to similar to 1.9 Gg/a in 2007, but estimated industrial production exceeds these modeled emissions by an average of similar to 50%. This discrepancy cannot be explained with a hypothetical land sink in the model, suggesting that only similar to 2/3 of the manufactured SO(2)F(2) is actually emitted into the atmosphere and that similar to 1/3 may be destroyed during fumigation. With mean SO(2)F(2) tropospheric mixing ratios of similar to 1.4 ppt, its radiative forcing is small and it is probably an insignificant sulfur source to the stratosphere. However, with a high global warming potential similar to CFC-11, and likely increases in its future use, continued atmospheric monitoring of SO(2)F(2) is warranted.

W
Warner, MJ, Weiss RF.  1992.  Chlorofluoromethanes in South Atlantic Antarctic Intermediate Water. Deep-Sea Research Part a-Oceanographic Research Papers. 39:2053-2075.   10.1016/0198-0149(92)90013-j   AbstractWebsite

Distributions of the dissolved atmospheric chlorofluoromethanes (CFMs) F-11 and F-12 in the South Atlantic Ocean are used to study the ventilation and circulation of Antarctic Intermediate Water (AAIW). CFM distributions on an isopycnal surface representative of AAIW are consistent with recently ventilated water entering the subtropical gyre in the southwestern Atlantic and then being advected anticyclonically around this gyre. The westward-flowing northern limb of the gyre apparently divides near the coast of South America with some water flowing southward to recirculate in the gyre, and the balance flowing northward along the coast of Brazil. At the equator this northward current divides again with one branch going eastward along the equator and the other continuing into the Northern Hemisphere. In the eastern tropical Atlantic, the CFM concentrations on this isopycnal surface in the cyclonic gyre are extremely low between the subtropical gyre and the equatorial tongue. Along the prime meridian, the F-11 and F-12 concentrations on the 27.2 sigma(theta) isopycnal surface between the mixed layer outcrop and the northern edge of the subtropical gyre are fitted to a one-dimensional advection-diffusion model. This model assumes that the CFMs enter the subtropical gyre solely by northward diffusion from the mixed layer outcrop to the southern edge of the subtropical gyre, and that their distributions within the gyre are controlled by both advective and diffusive processes. Velocity and eddy diffusion coefficients are calculated from a least-squares fit to the data. These values are then used to calculate a mean oxygen consumption rate which is consistent with rates calculated using models of other time-dependent geochemical tracers.

Warner, MJ, Bullister JL, Wisegarver DP, Gammon RH, Weiss RF.  1996.  Basin-wide distributions of chlorofluorocarbons CFC-11 and CFC-12 in the north Pacific: 1985-1989. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 101:20525-20542.   10.1029/96jc01849   AbstractWebsite

All of the dissolved chlorofluorocarbon measurements made between 1985 and 1989 along several long zonal and meridional hydrographic sections in the North Pacific are presented in this manuscript. Chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) concentrations are displayed as functions of depth and density along the sections. Over much of the region studied, dissolved CFCs are observed to have penetrated to densities greater than those that outcrop at the surface in the North Pacific (sigma(theta) > 26.8). Maxima in CFC concentration are associated with remnant winter mixed layers and with mode waters. When the observed CFC concentrations from these sections are normalized to a common date and mapped onto five density surfaces in the North Pacific, it becomes apparent that the Sea of Okhotsk is an important location for the ventilation of the intermediate waters of the North Pacific. The CFC observations are used together with hydrographic data to study the pathways and timescales of circulation and ventilation processes in the upper and intermediate waters of the North Pacific. Using models of the increases of these compounds as a function of time, CFC ''apparent ages'' are calculated on these isopycnal surfaces. The CFC apparent ages are used together with observed apparent oxygen utilization to estimate oxygen utilization rates along these sections.

Waugh, DW, Vollmer MK, Weiss RF, Haine TWN, Hall TM.  2002.  Transit time distributions in Lake Issyk-Kul. Geophysical Research Letters. 29   10.1029/2002gl016201   AbstractWebsite

[1] Measurements of sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)and chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) are used to constrain the timescales for deep-water renewal in Lake Issyk-Kul. As these tracers have different tropospheric histories their combination provides more transport information than one tracer alone. In particular, from these measurements the mean, Gamma, and standard deviation, sigma, of the distributions of transit times since water made last contact with the surface can be tightly constrained. Gamma is older than the age determined from SF6 and younger than the ages from the CFCs, and increases from around 4 yrs at 200 m to around 10.5 yrs at the deepest location (655 m). sigma also increases with depth and equals around 0.7 to 0.8 Gamma, which corresponds to large ranges of transit times, and implies mixing processes play a major role in the transport. The approach used can also be applied to similar tracer measurements in the oceans and groundwaters to constrain transport in these geophysical systems.

Weiss, RF, Carmack EC, Koropalov VM.  1991.  Deep-water renewal and biological production in Lake Baikal. Nature. 349:665-669.   10.1038/349665a0   AbstractWebsite

The physics of mixing in deep temperate lakes is strongly constrained by the existence of a temperature of maximum density for fresh water, and by the pressure dependence of that temperature. The world's deepest lake is well suited to the study of such deep-water renewal processes, and also to the determination of the rate of renewal using time-dependent chemical tracers. The mean rates of biological recycling of oxygen, carbon and nutrients for the entire lake can then also be determined.

Wells, KC, Millet DB, Bousserez N, Henze DK, Chaliyakunnel S, Griffis TJ, Luan Y, Dlugokencky EJ, Prinn RG, O'Doherty S, Weiss RF, Dutton GS, Elkins JW, Krummel PB, Langenfelds R, Steele LP, Kort EA, Wofsy SC, Umezawa T.  2015.  Simulation of atmospheric N2O with GEOS-Chem and its adjoint: evaluation of observational constraints. Geoscientific Model Development. 8:3179-3198.   10.5194/gmd-8-3179-2015   AbstractWebsite

We describe a new 4D-Var inversion framework for nitrous oxide (N2O) based on the GEOS-Chem chemical transport model and its adjoint, and apply it in a series of observing system simulation experiments to assess how well N2O sources and sinks can be constrained by the current global observing network. The employed measurement ensemble includes approximately weekly and quasicontinuous N2O measurements (hourly averages used) from several long-term monitoring networks, N2O measurements collected from discrete air samples onboard a commercial aircraft (Civil Aircraft for the Regular Investigation of the atmosphere Based on an Instrument Container; CARIBIC), and quasi-continuous measurements from the airborne HIAPER Pole-to-Pole Observations (HIPPO) campaigns. For a 2-year inversion, we find that the surface and HIPPO observations can accurately resolve a uniform bias in emissions during the first year; CARIBIC data provide a somewhat weaker constraint. Variable emission errors are much more difficult to resolve given the long lifetime of N2O, and major parts of the world lack significant constraints on the seasonal cycle of fluxes. Current observations can largely correct a global bias in the stratospheric sink of N2O if emissions are known, but do not provide information on the temporal and spatial distribution of the sink. However, for the more realistic scenario where source and sink are both uncertain, we find that simultaneously optimizing both would require unrealistically small errors in model transport. Regardless, a bias in the magnitude of the N2O sink would not affect the a posteriori N2O emissions for the 2-year timescale used here, given realistic initial conditions, due to the timescale required for stratosphere-troposphere exchange (STE). The same does not apply to model errors in the rate of STE itself, which we show exerts a larger influence on the tropospheric burden of N2O than does the chemical loss rate over short (< 3 year) timescales. We use a stochastic estimate of the inverse Hessian for the inversion to evaluate the spatial resolution of emission constraints provided by the observations, and find that significant, spatially explicit constraints can be achieved in locations near and immediately upwind of surface measurements and the HIPPO flight tracks; however, these are mostly confined to North America, Europe, and Australia. None of the current observing networks are able to provide significant spatial information on tropical N2O emissions. There, averaging kernels (describing the sensitivity of the inversion to emissions in each grid square) are highly smeared spatially and extend even to the midlatitudes, so that tropical emissions risk being conflated with those elsewhere. For global inversions, therefore, the current lack of constraints on the tropics also places an important limit on our ability to understand extratropical emissions. Based on the error reduction statistics from the inverse Hessian, we characterize the atmospheric distribution of unconstrained N2O, and identify regions in and downwind of South America, central Africa, and Southeast Asia where new surface or profile measurements would have the most value for reducing present uncertainty in the global N2O budget.

Whitworth, T, Nowlin WD, Pillsbury RD, Moore MI, Weiss RF.  1991.  Observations of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current and deep boundary current in the southwest Atlantic. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 96:15105-15118.   10.1029/91jc01319   AbstractWebsite

Fourteen-month velocity and temperature records from an array of 14 moorings north and west of the Falkland Plateau and supporting hydrographic and tracer data reveal a narrow boundary current that carries dense Antarctic waters. The current flows west along the northern flank of the Falkland Plateau with mean speeds of more than 10 cm s-1 at 5000 m and more than 30 cm s-1 at 2500 m. The westward flow extends from the bottom to at least 1000 m, but the upper portion of the current is a branch of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) following the only deepwater route between the Scotia Sea and the Argentine Basin. Waters colder than 0.2-degrees-C are too cold to be associated with the ACC at Drake Passage and must ultimately derive from the Weddell Sea as part of the deep thermohaline circulation. The westward transport of water colder than 0.2-degrees-C is 8.2 x 10(6) m3 s-1. In the mean the bottom boundary current is similar to that predicted by the Stommel-Arons model, but considerable variability is introduced by the meandering of the overlying ACC. Chlorofluorocarbon data suggest that new Antarctic water from the Georgia Basin enters the Argentine Basin via the deep boundary current, which passes beneath the ACC; some new water is also advected east after being entrained in the ACC. Most of the water in the deep boundary current is recirculated water that has been in residence in the Argentine Basin for some time. Water colder than -0.2-degrees-C is relatively new to the basin and comprises about 2.5 x 10(6) m3 s-1 of the westward flow of the boundary current.