oa South African Journal of Science - KAPEX: an international experiment to study deep water movement around southern Africa

Volume 93, Issue 9
  • ISSN : 0038-2353
  • E-ISSN: 1996-7489



Over the past decade it has been demonstrated unequivocally that the exchange of water masses between the Indian and the Atlantic oceans, south of Africa, is a key component of the global thermohaline circulation cell. This thermohaline circulation plays a large part in controlling global climate. Numerous South African and international studies have now been completed on these water exchanges, but most have concentrated their efforts on the upper water masses. We descriptionbe here an extensive and exciting new venture, called KAPEX, to investigate the movement of water at intermediate depths using sophisticated Lagrangian floats. This research programme is a collaborative effort between research groups from three countries and constitutes the geographically largest oceanographic experiment ever carried out in South African waters. Detailed information on the aims as well as the progress of KAPEX is available on the Internet on the home page http://triton.sea.uct.ac.za

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