Mixed Layer Response to Monsoonal Surface Forcing in the Arabian Sea
Final rept. 1 Oct 1993-31 Dec 2002
WOODS HOLE OCEANOGRAPHIC INSTITUTION MA
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A surface mooring was deployed in the Arabian Sea for one year. Subsequent analyses provided quantitative descriptions of the upper ocean response to the surface forcing, including heat budgets and identification of the relative roles of various physical processes. One- and three-dimensional models were used to further examine the dynamics of the response at the site of the moored array and to extend the study to the entire Arabian Sea. The fieldwork produced the first long time series of high quality surface meteorology and air-sea fluxes from the Arabian Sea. Observations of the strong cooling heat flux associated with offshore transport gave new insight into the dynamic mechanisms connecting coastal upwelling and upper ocean cooling. New understanding of the physics of the upper ocean in the Arabian Sea was developed, including the impact of the diurnal cycle and of high-frequency wind forcing on the vertical mixing and on larger-scale circulation changes. Comparison of mixed layer model performance suggests some simple improvements in the parameterizations could be made in lieu of resolution of the diurnal cycle.
- Physical and Dynamic Oceanography