Animation of a Model of CFC-11 Invading the North Atlantic Ocean.

The animation depicts CFC-11 invading the deep North Atlantic Ocean at 1975m depth, as simulated by a numerical model. The loop runs from 1955 to 1983. The grey areas indicate the continents. White areas are ocean regions as yet CFC free. Purple and blue colors indicate very low concentrations of CFC-11, around 0.05 to 0.1 picomolar. Concentrations below 0.05 picomolar are not shaded here. Yellows and reds indicate concentrations of order one or two picomolar.

The atmospheric concentration of CFC-11 increased dramatically during the period of the simulation. The gas dissolves into the surface waters. At high latitudes (in the Labrador and Greenland Seas) deep convective mixing transports the CFC-enriched surface waters to great depth. A plume of CFC-11 extends down the western margin of the model ocean indicating the strong Deep Western Boundary Current which advects the CFC-rich waters away from the source region. This plume is consistent with observed CFC distributions (Weiss et al, Nature, 314, 608, 1985).

You can also see an animated section along 19.5W from the same model. Note that the color scale in this animation is different from that above.