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Plot Antarctic Circumpolar Current Fronts

version (16 KB) by Chad Greene
Plot the locations of the major fronts associated with the Antarctic Circumpolar Current.


Updated 26 Aug 2014

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Plot the meridional extent of fronts associated with the Antarctic Circumpolar Current as described by Alex Orsi and others in their landmark work, "On the meridional extent and fronts of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current, Deep-Sea Res. I, 42, 641-673, 1995".
This script downloads data from the World Ocean Circulation Experiments Southern Ocean Atlas, which can be found online at

This function is now a plugin for Antarctic Mapping Tools.

Comments and Ratings (6)

Hello Chad,
Could you please tell me how can superimpose this on my pcolor plot:

load coast;
hold on;
title('Sea Surface Temperature Tendency');

I want to kind of overlay the acc lines on my map but it is erasing my map. Any ideas?

Chad Greene

Oh dang, yes, I've heard from a number of folks that the TAMU site no longer seems to be supporting the SODB. Feel free to email me directly and I'll send you the zip file containing the ACC front data.

Hi Chad,

Thanks for the assistance. However, I am getting a notification that the datasets (pf.txt, etc) cannot be found. When I go to the tamu link above, I find that the link is dead. Any idea how I can download the front data? Thanks!

Chad Greene

Hi Vincent,

If you have Matlab's Mapping Toolbox, this'll do it:

worldmap([-60 -25],[155 190])

pf = importdata('pf.txt');

saf = importdata('saf.txt');

stf = importdata('stf.txt');

If not, you can use my borders function (also on file exchange) like this:

borders('new zealand','facecolor',rgb('tan'),'nomappingtoolbox')
axis([155 190 -60 -25])

pf = importdata('pf.txt');

saf = importdata('saf.txt');

stf = importdata('stf.txt');

Let me know if you have any other questions.

I should elaborate--looking to plot the PF, SAF, STF on my map of New Zealand. Thanks.

Brilliant package here, Chad (as well as your Antarctic Mapping Tools toolbox). Wondering if there is a way to overlay the antarctic fronts on a map I've created using this package without the Antarctic Mapping Tools kit? Cheers.


A cleaner rewrite as a plugin for Antarctic Mapping Tools. Example file now included.

MATLAB Release Compatibility
Created with R2012b
Compatible with any release
Platform Compatibility
Windows macOS Linux

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