Accession Number:

ADA539819

Title:

Modeling the Seasonal and Interannual Variability of the Northern Gulf of California Salinity

Descriptive Note:

Journal article

Corporate Author:

NAVAL RESEARCH LAB STENNIS SPACE CENTER MS OCEAN MONITORING AND PREDICTION SECTION

Report Date:

2011-02-15

Pagination or Media Count:

13.0

Abstract:

The 7 years 2003-2009 of output from a regional version of the Hybrid Coordinate Ocean Model HYCOM nested in global HYCOM are used to study the seasonal and interannual variability of the salinity in the northern Gulf of California NGOC. Previous studies illustrate that the NGOC is characterized by an annual evaporation of 0.9 myr. This evaporation generates high-sea-surface-salinity SSS water, which reaches a maxima in the NGOC 37 and decreases to 35 toward the entrance of the Gulf of California. The NGOC surface water is interannually modulated by fluctuations in evaporation and by fluctuations in the low-salinity water transported into the region by poleward eastern boundary currents. The fluctuations in the transport of low-salinity water are linked to the arrival of equatorially originated coastally trapped waves. The crucial role of the transport of low-salinity water for the interannual variability of SSS is illustrated by the 2006 and 2008 fall seasons, which include the lowest simulated salinity of the period 2003-2009. The lowest salinity in 2006 and 2008 cannot be explained solely by evaporation because 2006 was characterized by the largest evaporation of the period 2003-2009. However, the presence of the lowest-salinity environment can be attributed to the evaporation in conjunction with the largest upper ocean transport of low-salinity water carried to the NGOC by the 2006 and 2008 coastally trapped waves intensified poleward eastern boundary currents.

Subject Categories:

  • Physical and Dynamic Oceanography

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE