The climatological seasonal response of the ocean mixed layer in the equatorial and tropical Pacific Ocean
Ries, Harry J.
Garwood, Roland W.
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Seasonal changes of mixed layer depth (MLD) can be related to the forcing by the net surface heating and wind speed. This is shown in this study by comparing the monthly mixed layer depth from temperature profiles in the Bauer-Robinson Numerical Atlas with monthly net surface heating and wind speed obtained from the Weare Marine Climatic Atlas of the Tropical Pacific Ocean. Using a conceptual model based on mixed layer physics, ocean response and atmospheric forcing are examined using the Obukhov mixing length. A pattern in the seasonal variation of upwelling along the Equator is also examined. The model links the atmospheric and oceanic climatologies through the derived MLD (oceanic data) and Obukhov mixing lengths (forcing data). The results show a high degree of pattern similarity between the seasonal response of the ocean and the seasonal changes in atmospheric forcing. The pattern of seasonal influence on MLD at the Equator is very weak in comparison to that of the tropics and sub-tropics. Keywords: Ocean models; Atmosphere models; Equatorial regions; Mixed layer marine; Air water interactions; Theses. (EDC)
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