EGU24-4707, updated on 08 Mar 2024
EGU General Assembly 2024
© Author(s) 2024. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Twenty years of observing the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) at 26N

Ben Moat1, David Smeed1, William Johns2, Shane Elipot2, Darren Rayner1, Ryan Smith3, Denis Volkov3, Jules Kajtar1, Tillys Petit1, and Julie Collins4
Ben Moat et al.
  • 1National Oceanography Centre, MPOC, Southampton, United Kingdom of Great Britain – England, Scotland, Wales (
  • 2University of Miami, USA
  • 4British Oceanographic Data Centre, UK

The RAPID-MOCHA-WBTS (hereafter RAPID) array is an observing system designed to study the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC). It is an international collaboration between the National Oceanography Centre, University of Miami, and NOAA. The primary goals of the RAPID array are to observe and understand changes in the AMOC over time, and improve our understanding of how changes in the ocean circulation system may influence regional and global climate patterns. The array consists of a network of moored instruments, which measure ocean temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, and flow velocities.

The AMOC at 26◦N has now been continuously measured by the RAPID array over the period April 2004 to present (20 years of observing). This record provides unique insight into the variability of the large-scale ocean circulation, previously only measured by sporadic snapshots of basin-wide transport from hydrographic ship sections. The continuous measurements have unveiled striking variability on timescales of days to a decade, driven largely by wind forcing, contrasting with previous expectations about a slowly varying buoyancy-forced overturning circulation.

We will present the history of the RAPID observational array and its contribution to AMOC science.

How to cite: Moat, B., Smeed, D., Johns, W., Elipot, S., Rayner, D., Smith, R., Volkov, D., Kajtar, J., Petit, T., and Collins, J.: Twenty years of observing the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) at 26N, EGU General Assembly 2024, Vienna, Austria, 14–19 Apr 2024, EGU24-4707,, 2024.