National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration
United States Department of Commerce


FY 2000

The Aleutian North Slope Current

Reed, R.K., and P.J. Stabeno

In Dynamics of the Bering Sea: A Summary of Physical, Chemical, and Biological Characteristics, and a Synopsis of Research on the Bering Sea, T.R. Loughlin and K. Ohtani (eds.), University of Alaska Sea Grant, AK-SG-99-03, North Pacific Marine Science Organization (PICES), 177–191 (1999)

Northward inflows of the Alaskan Stream through Near Strait, Amchitka Pass, and Amukta Pass help produce eastward flow along the northern side of the Aleutian Islands. We call this feature the Aleutian North Slope Current (ANSC). The ANSC is often fairly narrow and shallow with peak speeds sometimes >40 cm/s. Eddylike features also occur in this region. At times, an eastward velocity maximum is present below the near-surface ANSC; this appears to result from the structure of flow in Amchitka Pass. The ANSC transports 2-4 × 10 m/s and is the main source of the northwestward flowing Bering Slope Current, which in turn provides inflow to the Kamchatka Current on the western side of the Bering Sea basin.

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