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Robert H. Weisberg
and
T. Y. Tang

Abstract

Observed variations in the Atlantic Ocean's equatorial thermocline are compared at four locations with simulations using an analytical reduced-gravity model. The comparison shows the essential features of the seasonal wind-forced thermocline response to be accounted for by a linear superposition of equatorial long waves, evolving basinwide, tending to bring the zonal pressure gradient into balance with the wind stress. A frequency response function is derived whose properties provide a basis for discussing the large scale features of the equatorial Atlantic Ocean's seasonal cycle—for example, its evolution along the equator, the maximum upwelling region observed in the Gulf of Guinea and the secondary upwelling season also observed there. Clarification is also given to the issue of remote versus local forcing for these features.

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T. Y. Tang
,
Y. Hsueh
,
Y. J. Yang
, and
J. C. Ma

Abstract

Hydrographic observations and current measurements with a Shipboard Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler over the continental shelf–slope junction northeast of Taiwan during 10–17 August 1994 allow the construction of the mesoscale flow pattern generated by the collision of the Kuroshio and a stretch of the continental shelf that has turned to run nearly east–west. The pattern is made up of a deflected Kuroshio mainstream to the east, an intrusion of Kuroshio water onto the continental shelf region, a counterclockwise circulation over Mien-Hwa Canyon (MHC) immediately northeast of Taiwan, a deep southwestward countercurrent along the northern wall of MHC, and a seaward outflow of continental shelf water around the northern coast of Taiwan. The hydrography features a cold dome over the west side of MHC that consisted of subsurface Kuroshio water. A temperature–salinity plot of all the station data shows the incorporation in the neighborhood of Taiwan of continental shelf water into the Kuroshio.

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T. Y. Tang
,
R. H. Weisberg
, and
D. Halpern

Abstract

The vertical structure of low frequency velocity and temperature variability in the eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean is examined using surface and subsurface moored current meter data from 0°, 110°W between 20 and 3027 m depths over the period 30 March 1980 to 2 February 1981. Three methods of analysis are employed: vertical coherence, empirical orthogonal functions, and linear least-squares dynamical mode decompositions. Direct evidence is given for the existence of first baroclinic mode Kelvin waves in the east component of velocity and vertical displacement (estimated from temperature) in that the vertical displacement is coherent and in phase over the water column and the upper-ocean east component of velocity varies out of phase with the vertical displacement over the water column. Near-surface modifications due to advection, nonadiabatic processes, and local forcing are also noted.

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E.A. D'Asaro
,
P. G. Black
,
L. R. Centurioni
,
Y.-T. Chang
,
S. S. Chen
,
R. C. Foster
,
H. C. Graber
,
P. Harr
,
V. Hormann
,
R.-C. Lien
,
I.-I. Lin
,
T. B. Sanford
,
T.-Y. Tang
, and
C.-C. Wu

Tropical cyclones (TCs) change the ocean by mixing deeper water into the surface layers, by the direct air–sea exchange of moisture and heat from the sea surface, and by inducing currents, surface waves, and waves internal to the ocean. In turn, the changed ocean influences the intensity of the TC, primarily through the action of surface waves and of cooler surface temperatures that modify the air–sea fluxes. The Impact of Typhoons on the Ocean in the Pacific (ITOP) program made detailed measurements of three different TCs (i.e., typhoons) and their interaction with the ocean in the western Pacific. ITOP coordinated meteorological and oceanic observations from aircraft and satellites with deployments of autonomous oceanographic instruments from the aircraft and from ships. These platforms and instruments measured typhoon intensity and structure, the underlying ocean structure, and the long-term recovery of the ocean from the storms' effects with a particular emphasis on the cooling of the ocean beneath the storm and the resulting cold wake. Initial results show how different TCs create very different wakes, whose strength and properties depend most heavily on the nondimensional storm speed. The degree to which air–sea fluxes in the TC core were reduced by ocean cooling varied greatly. A warm layer formed over and capped the cold wakes within a few days, but a residual cold subsurface layer persisted for 10–30 days.

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J. Boutin
,
Y. Chao
,
W. E. Asher
,
T. Delcroix
,
R. Drucker
,
K. Drushka
,
N. Kolodziejczyk
,
T. Lee
,
N. Reul
,
G. Reverdin
,
J. Schanze
,
A. Soloviev
,
L. Yu
,
J. Anderson
,
L. Brucker
,
E. Dinnat
,
A. Santos-Garcia
,
W. L. Jones
,
C. Maes
,
T. Meissner
,
W. Tang
,
N. Vinogradova
, and
B. Ward

Abstract

Remote sensing of salinity using satellite-mounted microwave radiometers provides new perspectives for studying ocean dynamics and the global hydrological cycle. Calibration and validation of these measurements is challenging because satellite and in situ methods measure salinity differently. Microwave radiometers measure the salinity in the top few centimeters of the ocean, whereas most in situ observations are reported below a depth of a few meters. Additionally, satellites measure salinity as a spatial average over an area of about 100 × 100 km2. In contrast, in situ sensors provide pointwise measurements at the location of the sensor. Thus, the presence of vertical gradients in, and horizontal variability of, sea surface salinity complicates comparison of satellite and in situ measurements. This paper synthesizes present knowledge of the magnitude and the processes that contribute to the formation and evolution of vertical and horizontal variability in near-surface salinity. Rainfall, freshwater plumes, and evaporation can generate vertical gradients of salinity, and in some cases these gradients can be large enough to affect validation of satellite measurements. Similarly, mesoscale to submesoscale processes can lead to horizontal variability that can also affect comparisons of satellite data to in situ data. Comparisons between satellite and in situ salinity measurements must take into account both vertical stratification and horizontal variability.

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