Burger
Journalpaper

Exact Solutions and Stability Analysis of a Nonlinear Model of Open-Ocean Deep Convection that Allows Multiple Steady States

Abstract

We present analytical solutions of the two-basin model of open-ocean deep convection. Originally suggested by Whitehead [Whitehead, J.A. (2000), Stratified convection with multiple states, Ocean Modelling, 2(3-4), 109121], the model allows regimes with multiple steady states (multiple equilibria). We provide the full analytical description of the steady states for the particular case of constant surface heat flux from the ocean to the atmosphere, and explore analytically stability of the equilibria within the Lyapunov theory. The results show that, for this particular case, the steady state is unique and stable for all dynamic flow regimes. We also present analytical expressions for dependence of critical values of sea-surface heat flux,at which transitions between the dynamic regimes occur,on the model parameters.
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