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The atmospheric heat flux has been very successfully simulated with the coupling to a thermodynamic model of the lowest layer of the atmosphere (Seager et al 1995a,1995b). This novel approach allows computation of the surface heat fluxes allowing for the feedbacks between the SST and the fluxes. The results are encouraging and in fact give more realistic simulations of SST than when the ocean model is run with a restoring-to-observed SST boundary condition. The uncertain parameters of the atmospheric mixed layer and heat flux models are currently being adjusted using the statistical optimization scheme of Blumenthal and Cane (1989). A correct computation of surface heat fluxes is of course not possible in high latitudes without the effects of sea ice. The effects of a partial ice cover has been included in the atmospheric mixed layer component of the model (Seager, 1996).

- Blumenthal, M.B. and Cane, M.A., 1989: Accounting for parameter uncertainties in model verification: an illustration with tropical sea surface temperature., J. Phys. Oceanogr., 19, 815--830.
- Seager, R., M. B. Blumenthal and Y. Kushnir, 1995: An advective atmospheric mixed layer model for ocean modeling purposes: Global simulation of surface heat fluxes. J. Climate, 7, 1943-1957.
- Seager, R., Y. Kushnir and M. A. Cane, 1995: On heat flux boundary conditions for ocean models. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 25, 3219-3230.
- Seager, R., 1996: Generalization of an advective atmospheric mixed layer model for ocean modeling purposes: Simulation of Southern Ocean heat fluxes. J. Climate, unpublished manuscript.