European Directory of Marine Environmental Data (EDMED)

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Data set name

The Fine Resolution Antarctic Model (FRAM) Data Set

Data holding centreNational Oceanography Centre, Southampton
CountryUnited Kingdom  United Kingdom
Time periodInstantaneous model output at 6.0 years and at monthly intervals for the period 10.0 - 16.0 of the model run.
Geographical area

Latitude 24° S to 79° S at a resolution of 0.25 degrees, longitude 0° E to 360° E at a resolution of 0.5 degrees.


Vertical velocity of the water column (currents); Suspended particulate material setting velocity parameters; Sedimentation flux quantification in the water column; Salinity of the water column; Horizontal velocity of the water column (currents); Temperature of the water column




The aim of the UK FRAM project was to enable scientists to study the circulation and heat transport of the Southern Ocean using the results of a numerical model. The Southern Ocean was chosen because of the central role of its major current, the Antarctic Circumpolar Current, in transporting heat, nutrients and other water properties between the oceans of the world. It also affects the climate of the region by acting as a barrier between the cold water surrounding Antarctica and the sub-tropical water to the north. The model grid gives a resolution at 60 S of about 27km in each direction, which is sufficient to resolve the dynamically important synoptic scale eddies. There are 32 levels in the vertical, which are needed to represent the detailed vertical structure and bottom topography of the ocean. The main model run started in the spring of 1989 and a total of 16 years was completed before the project officially ended in April 1992. During the first six years of the model run, the 'robust-diagnostic' method was used to assimilate the historical Levitus temperature and salinity fields. The model output at the end of this period is of particular interest because of its closeness to the original data. After this, the model was allowed to evolve freely producing a realistic eddy field. Data for the period 10.0 - 16.0 years, for which the model is considered to be quasi-stationary, is available for analysis purposes.

OriginatorsNational Oceanography Centre, Southampton
Data web site
OrganisationNational Oceanography Centre, Southampton

National Oceanography Centre, Southampton
University of Southampton Waterfront Campus European Way
SO14 3ZH
United Kingdom

Telephone+44 23 8059 6666
Collating centreBritish Oceanographic Data Centre
Local identifier1017007
Global identifier1314
Last revised2010-01-10