Aspects of the hydrological cycle of the ocean-atmosphere system

Chen Tsing-Chang Chen, J. Pfaendtner, Weng Su-Ping Weng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


The balance equations for atmospheric water vapor and freshwater in the oceans are used to illustrate that evaporation and precipitation represent the major linkage between the atmospheric and oceanic branches of the global hydrological cycles. Attempts are also made to establish the hydrological cycle of the coupled ocean-atmosphere system using water vapor flux divergence, precipitation, and interoceanic freshwater transport estimates from previous studies as well as computational results with more recent data. The hydrological cycle works as follows: the atmospheric water vapor converged to the Pacific results in an excess of precipitation and a freshwater transport across the Bering Strait and the Arctic Sea to the Atlantic. The atmospheric water and vapour is then diverged out of the latter ocean due to an excess of evaporation there. -Authors

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1827-1833
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Physical Oceanography
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography


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