Elin Darelius's picture

Elin Darelius

Associate Professor
  • E-mailElin.Darelius@uib.no
  • Phone+47 55 58 25 99+47 980 83 368
  • Visitor Address
    Allég. 70
  • Postal Address
    Postboks 7803
    5020 BERGEN

In the present climate, all deep oceans are filled with cold water originating at high latitudes. Cooling and salinification through freezing and brine rejection in polar regions produce cold, dense water masses that sinks and eventually flow equatorward at depth. Meanwhile, light and warm surface water flows poleward, cloosing the (much simplified) loop that is commonly referred to as the thermohaline circulation (THC). The THC transports heat poleward, and has a central role in climate. Dense water "spilling over" from one ocean basin to another, will flow out along the continental slope as a dense plume. These overflow sites are regions of major water mass transformation, since lighter, ambient water is entrained into the plume, and important links in the THC. Despite their importance, much of the internal physics and dynamics of these flows are unknown. An understanding of overflows, plumes, and the related processes is an necessity if one seeks to understand and predict our changing climate.

In my work, I combine in situ observations with laboratory experiments and numerical models to explore e.g. mesoscale variability, secondary circulation, topographic steering, turbulence and mixing.

Faroe Bank Channel Overflow; The Faroe Bank Channel (840m) is the deepest connection between the Nordic Seas in the north and the Atlantic in the south. One third of the southflowing water passes through the channel. Energetic eddies or waves with a period of 3-5 days are observed in the plume downstream of the sill, effecting mixing and downslope transport, and in the channel secondary circulation influences the flow. In the project FAROE BANK CHANNEL OVERFLOW - DYNAMICS AND MIXING, we have deployed moorings and in 2012 we did an extensive fieldstudy combining traditional CTD and LADCP profiling with turbulence measurements and gliders to address questions on eddy generation, mixing and the role of secondary circulation.

Filchner Overflow, Antarctica; The Filchner Overflow was detected in 1977, when hydrographic sections from the continental slope in the southwestern Weddell Sea revealed a plume of dense, supercooled water emerging from the Filchner depression. The plume consists of Ice Shelf Water (ISW) originating from the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf cavity, where it has been cooled from contact with glacial ice at great depth. On the continental slope, the ISW mixes with the ambient water to form Weddell Sea Bottom Water and evenually Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW). AABW occupies a major part of the deep ocean. In my PhD, I analysed data from current meter moorings in the outflow region. We focussed on small-scale variability, and revealed oscillations in the velocity and temperature records with periods of 1.5, 3 and 6 days, that existent theories are unable to explain. We also synthesised all available CTD-data. In the current project WEDDELL we are returning to the Filchner overflow and in January 2012 we collected hydrographic, current and turbulence measurements from the Filchner Depression and deployed five moorings that will be recovered in 2013.

Topographic Steering; Due to the earth'r rotation (the Coriolis force), dense plumes will tend to flow along the slope in geostrophic balance. Canyons - and as shown in my PhD-thesis - also ridges cross-cutting the slope, may break this balance and steer plume water down the slope. In my PhD I applied an analytical model to describe the dynamics of these flows, and I further explored flow in canyons/along ridges in laboratory experiments, which I performed at the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, University of Washington and at the rotating Coriolis platform in Grenoble, France.

Journal articles
  • Daae, Kjersti; Hattermann, Tore; Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Fer, Ilker. 2017. On the effect of topography and wind on warm water inflow— An idealized study of the southern Weddell Sea continental shelf system. Journal of Geophysical Research - Oceans. 122: 2622-2641. doi: 10.1002/2016JC012541
  • Hansen, Bogi; Turid, Poulsen; Larsen, Karin Margretha Húsgarð; Hátún, Hjálmar; Østerhus, Svein; Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Berx, Barbara; Quadfasel, Detlef; Jochumsen, Kerstin. 2017. Atlantic water flow through the Faroese Channels Bogi. Ocean Science. 13: 873-888. doi: 10.5194/os-13-873-2017
  • Ryan, Svenja; Hattermann, Tore; Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Schröder, Michael. 2017. Seasonal cycle of hydrography on the eastern shelf of the Filchner Trough, Weddell Sea, Antarctica. Journal of Geophysical Research - Oceans. 122: 6437-6453. doi: 10.1002/2017JC012916
  • Semper, Stefanie; Darelius, Elin Maria K. 2017. Seasonal resonance of diurnal coastal trapped waves in the southern Weddell Sea, Antarctica. Ocean Science. 13: 77-93. doi: 10.5194/os-13-77-2017
  • Berntsen, Jarle; Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Avlesen, Helge. 2016. Gravity currents down canyons: effects of rotation. Ocean Dynamics. 66: 1353-1378. doi: 10.1007/s10236-016-0981-8
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Fer, Ilker; Nicholls, Keith W. 2016. Observed vulnerability of Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf to wind-driven inflow of warm deep water. Nature Communications. 7:12300. Published 2016-08-02. doi: 10.1038/ncomms12300
  • Fer, Ilker; Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Daae, Kjersti Birkeland. 2016. Observations of energetic turbulence on the Weddell Sea continental slope. Geophysical Research Letters. 43: 760-766. doi: 10.1002/2015GL067349
  • Semper, Stefanie; Darelius, Elin Maria K. 2016. Seasonal resonance of diurnal continental shelf waves in the southern Weddell Sea, Antarctica. Ocean Science Discussions (OSD). doi: 10.5194/os-2016-36
  • Ullgren, Jenny; Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Fer, Ilker. 2016. Volume transport and mixing of the Faroe Bank Channel overflow from one year of moored measurements. Ocean Science. 12: 451-470. doi: 10.5194/os-12-451-2016
  • Wåhlin, Anna K.; Kalén, Ola; Assmann, Karen Margarete; Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Ha, Ho Kyung; Kim, Tae Wan; Lee, Sang Hoon. 2016. Subinertial oscillations on the Amundsen Sea Shelf, Antarctica. Journal of Physical Oceanography. 46: 2573-2582. doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-14-0257.1
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Fer, Ilker; Rasmussen, Till; Guo, Chuncheng; Larsen, Karen M.H. 2015. On the modulation of the periodicity of the Faroe Bank Channel overflow instabilities. Ocean Science. 11: 855-871. doi: 10.5194/os-11-855-2015
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Langebroek, Petra. 2015. Havets hemmeligheter. Bergens Tidende. 14-15. Published 2015-09-13.
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K. 2014. Antarktis: inlandsis, shelf is och stigande havsnivå. Naturen. 6.
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Makinson, Keith; Daae, Kjersti Birkeland; Fer, Ilker; Holland, Paul R.; Nicholls, Keith W. 2014. Hydrography and circulation in the Filchner Depression, Weddell Sea, Antarctica. Journal of Geophysical Research - Oceans. 119: 5797-5814. doi: 10.1002/2014JC010225
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Strand, Kjersti Opstad; Østerhus, Svein; Gammelsrød, Tor; Årthun, Marius; Fer, Ilker. 2014. On the seasonal signal of the Filchner overflow, Weddell Sea, Antarctica. Journal of Physical Oceanography. 44: 1230-1243. doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-13-0180.1
  • Guo, Chuncheng; Ilicak, Mehmet; Fer, Ilker; Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Bentsen, Mats. 2014. Baroclinic instability of the Faroe Bank Channel overflow. Journal of Physical Oceanography. 44: 2698-2717. doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-14-0080.1
  • Ullgren, Jenny; Fer, Ilker; Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Beaird, Nicholas. 2014. Interaction of the Faroe Bank Channel overflow with Iceland Basin intermediate waters. Journal of Geophysical Research - Biogeosciences. 119: 228-240. doi: 10.1002/2013JC009437
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Ullgren, Jenny; Fer, Ilker. 2013. Observations of barotropic oscillations and their influence on mixing in the Faroe bank channel overflow region. Journal of Physical Oceanography. 43: 1525-1532. doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-13-059.1
  • Jensen, Mari Fjalstad; Fer, Ilker; Darelius, Elin Maria K. 2013. Low-frequency variability on the continental slope of the southern Weddell Sea. Journal of Geophysical Research - Oceans. 118: 4256-4272. doi: 10.1002/jgrc.20309
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Fer, Ilker; Quadfasel, Detlef. 2011. Faroe Bank Channel Overflow: Mesoscale Variability. Journal of Physical Oceanography. 41: 2137-2154. doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-11-035.1
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Smedsrud, Lars Henrik; Østerhus, Svein; Foldvik, Arne; Gammelsrød, Tor. 2009. Structure and variability of the Filchner overflow plume. Tellus. Series A, Dynamic meteorology and oceanography. 61: 446-464. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0870.2009.00391.x
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K. 2008. Topographic steering of dense overflows: Laboratory experiments with V-shaped ridges and canyons. Deep Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers. 55: 1021-1034. doi: 10.1016/j.dsr.2008.04.008
  • Wåhlin, Anna K.; Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Cenedese, Claudia; Lane-Serff, Gregory F. 2008. Laboratory observations of enhanced entrainment in dense overflows in the presence of submarine canyons and ridges. Deep Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers. 55: 737-750. doi: 10.1016/j.dsr.2008.02.007
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K.; Wåhlin, A. 2007. Downward flow of dense water leaning on a submarine ridge. Deep Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers. 54: 1173-1188. doi: 10.1016/j.dsr.2007.04.007
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K. 2006. Det stora blå. AKA. 25. Published 2006-04-05.
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K. 2005. Antarktis ger liv åt världshaven. Svenska dagbladet. Published 2005-09-18.
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K. 2005. Ovädren blir kraftigare när världen blir varmare. Svenska dagbladet. Published 2005-09-04.
Reports and theses
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K. 2007. On the influence of small-scale topography on dense overflow plumes, with a special focus on the Filchner Overflow Plume.
  • Darelius, Elin Maria K. 2003. Circulation and Water Mass Formation in an Arctic Fjord.

More information in national current research information system (CRIStin)


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LoTUS - WEDDEL: Installation and testing of autonomous bottom temperature recording buoys on the continental shelf in the Weddell Sea

WARM: Inflow of Warm Deep Water onto the Antarctic Continental Shelves

FRIS-OBS: Observing the sub-ice shelf circulation and the outflow of dense Ice Shelf Water from

GETZ: Installing phase sensitive radars on the Getz Ice-shelf, Antarctica

FILCHNER: Monitoring the warm inflow towards the Filchner Ice Shelf




Research groups