Neo-Science of Natural History : Integration of Geoscience and Biodiversity Studies;Proceedings


Impact of Panamanian Gateway Opening on the Global Ocean Circulation

Sumata, Hiroshi;Minobe, Shoshiro;Motoi, Tatsuo;Chan, Wing-Le

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KEYWORDS : Oceanic conveyer belt;Coupled GCM;Panamanian gateway;Miocene


It is believed that Panamanian isthmus was opened during the early to middle Miocene, and the Pacific and the Atlantic Oceans were connected via Panamanian Gateway. Several papers using proxy data suggested that oceanic circulation and climate system in that period had been significantly different from the present state. Numerical studies, which used oceanic general circulation model (OGCM), also proposed various views concerning oceanic circulation patterns in that period. In this study, numerical results from an ocean-atmosphere coupled general circulation model are analyzed to investigate paleoceanic circulation during Miocene. We focused on the effects of the Panamanian gateway to create paleoceanic steady state and oceanic conveyor belt during Miocene. The results show that water transport from the North Atlantic to the North Pacific Oceans through the Panamanian Gateway was important in maintaining the ocean circulation and the climate state in the past.