Articles | Volume 17, issue 1
Ocean Sci., 17, 203–219, 2021
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-17-203-2021
Ocean Sci., 17, 203–219, 2021
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-17-203-2021

Research article 28 Jan 2021

Research article | 28 Jan 2021

Spiciness theory revisited, with new views on neutral density, orthogonality, and passiveness

Rémi Tailleux

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Preprint under review for OS

Cited articles

Butler, E. D., Oliver, K. I., Gregory, J. M., and Tailleux, R.: The ocean's gravitational potential energy budget in a coupled climate model, Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 5417–5422, https://doi.org/10.1002/2013GL057996, 2013. a
deSzoeke, R. A. and Springer, S. R.: The materiality and neutrality of neutral density and orthobaric density, J. Phys. Oceanogr., 39, 1779–1799, https://doi.org/10.1175/2009JPO4042.1, 2009. a
Eden, C. and Willebrand, J.: Neutral density revisited, Deep-Sea Res., 46, 34–54, https://doi.org/10.1016/S0967-0645(98)00113-1, 1999. a, b
Feistel, R.: Thermodynamic properties of seawater, ice and humid air: TEOS-10, before and beyond, Ocean Sci., 14, 471–502, https://doi.org/10.5194/os-14-471-2018, 2018. a
Flament, P.: A state variable for characterizing water masses and their diffusive stability: Spiciness, Prog. Oceanogr., 54, 493–501, https://doi.org/10.1016/S0079-6611(02)00065-4, 2002. a, b, c, d, e, f, g, h, i, j
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Short summary
Because the density of seawater depends on both temperature (T) and salinity (S), it is possible for seawater samples of the same density to have widely different T and S characteristics ranging from hot and salt (spicy) to fresh and cold (minty). For several decades, oceanographers have been debating how to best construct a variable for quantifying the spiciness of seawater. This work discusses the relative merits and drawbacks of existing approaches and proposes a new way forward.