Articles | Volume 11, issue 3
Research article
12 May 2015
Research article |  | 12 May 2015

Modelling of the anthropogenic tritium transient and its decay product helium-3 in the Mediterranean Sea using a high-resolution regional model

M. Ayache, J.-C. Dutay, P. Jean-Baptiste, K. Beranger, T. Arsouze, J. Beuvier, J. Palmieri, B. Le-vu, and W. Roether

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Cited articles

Andrie, C. and Merlivat, L.: Tritium in the western Mediterranean Sea during 1981 Phycemed cruise, Deep-Sea Res. Pt. I, 35, 247–267,, 1988.
Antonov, J. I., Locarnini, R. A., Boyer, T. P., Mishonov, A. V., and Garcia, H. E.: World Ocean Atlas 2005, Vol. 2 Salinity, edited by: Levitus, S., NOAA Atlas NESDIS 62, US Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 182 pp., 2006.
Attané, I. and Courbage, Y.: Demography in the Mediterranean region: situation and projections, Plan Bleu, Paris, Economica, available at:, 2004.
Barnier, B., Siefridt, L., and Marchesiello, P.: Thermal forcing for a global ocean circulation model using a three-year climatology of ECMWF analyses, J. Marine Syst., 6, 363–380,, 1995.
Béranger, K., Mortier, L., Gasparini, G.-P., Gervasio, L., Astraldi, M., and Crépon, M.: The dynamics of the Sicily Strait: a comprehensive study from observations and models, Deep-Sea Res. Pt. II, 51, 411–440,, 2004.
Short summary
The anthropogenic tritium invasion, and its decay product helium-3, was simulated for the first time in the Mediterranean Sea, using a high-resolution regional model (NEMO-MED12). The simulation covers the entire tritium (3H) transient generated by the atmospheric nuclear weapons tests performed in the 1950s and early 1960s and run until 2011. The model correctly simulates the main features of the thermohaline circulation in the Mediterranean Sea, with a realistic time compared to observations.