Air-sea interaction patterns in the equatorial Pacific
Kent, John E.
Murphree, James Thomas.
Chu, Peter C.
MetadataShow full item record
We have investigated air-sea interaction patterns in the equatorial Pacific during the 1991-1992 El Nino/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) event. Our study focused on the identification of spatial and temporal relationships between sea surface temperatures, subsurface temperatures, and winds. These relationships were examined using time series and statistical analyses of atmosphere and ocean data from the moored buoys of the Tropical Oceans-Global Atmosphere (TOGA) program. Our results strongly suggest that the heat content of the ocean mixed layer greatly affected air-sea interactions. In almost all regions, mixed layer warming was followed within one week by increased winds. In most cases, the mixed layer warming before wind events was accompanied by a thickening of the mixed layer, suggesting that internal waves were strongly influencing air-sea interactions. Increased winds tended to precede surface cooling and subsurface warming by a few days. There were strong correlations between warming (cooling) thermocline temperature and increased (decreased) zonal winds at the central and eastern equatorial Pacific buoys. In the central Pacific, thermocline warming (cooling) was associated with westerlies (easterlies). This suggested that equatorially trapped Kelvin waves warmed and thickened the mixed layer, resulting in increased zonal winds. In the central Pacific, these local zonal winds then reinforced the Kelvin waves through downwelling and upwelling. Ocean temperature inversions were found throughout the Pacific.
Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Steady decline of East Asian Monsoon Winds, 1969-2000: Evidence from direct ground measurements of wind speed Xu M.; Chang, C.-P.; Fu, C.; Ye,Qi; Robock. A.; Robinson, D.; Zhang, H. (2006);It is commonly believed that greenhouse-gas-induced global warming can weaken the east Asian winter monsoon but strengthen the summer monsoon, because of stronger warming over high-latitude land as compared to low-latitude ...
Asanuma, Hiromi (Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School, 1999-06-01); NPS-OC-99-01During 1997-1998, oceanographic conditions off Central California were monitored by means of a series of thirteen cruises which measured water properties along an oceanographic section perpendicular to the California Coast. ...
Chang, C.-P.; Li, Tim (2000-07-15);The key questions of how the tropospheric biennial oscillation (TBO) maintains the same phase from northern summer in South Asia to southern summer in Australia, and how the reversed phase can last through three locally ...