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Based on the work of Lenton (2000)1, Knox and McElroy (1984)2, and Sarmiento and Toggweiler (1984)3, Hector’s implementation of the ocean carbon cycle was documented in Hartin et al. (2016).4 Hector’s ocean is a four box model with two surface level boxes (high latitude and low latitude), an intermediate, and deep ocean boxes. Within the surface boxes Hector solves for pCO2, pH, [HCO\({_3}^{-1}\) ], [CO\(_{3}^{-2}\)], aragonite \(\Omega_{Ar}\) and calcite \(\Omega_{Ca}\). The chemistry of carbon in the surface boxes depends on salinity, dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), and temperature.


Six parameters may be set from the INI file or R interface:

  • tt (TT() in R), thermohaline overturning (m3/s)
  • tu (TU()), high latitude overturning (m3/s)
  • twi (TWI()), warm-intermediate exchange (m3/s)
  • tid (TID()), intermediate-deep exchange (m3/s)
  • preind_surface_c (OCEAN_PREIND_C_SURF()), preindustrial carbon in the surface ocean (Pg C)
  • preind_interdeep_c (OCEAN_PREIND_C_ID()), preindustrial carbon in the intermediate and deep ocean (Pg C)


  1. The oceanbox cpp and hpp files set up the four ocean boxes and determine connections between one another. How carbon, energy, and volume will move between the four ocean boxes.
  2. The ocean_csys cpp and hpp files define the solver for the temperature dependent system of equations that determine solubility and equilibrium constants.
  3. Within the ocean_component