The Mesoscale Eddies and Kuroshio Transport in the Western North Pacific East of Taiwan from 8-year (2003-2010) Model Reanalysis
NAVAL RESEARCH LAB STENNIS DETACHMENT STENNIS SPACE CENTER MS
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The relationship between the Kuroshio volume transport east of Taiwan 24 N and the impinging mesoscale eddies is investigated using 8-year reanalysis of a primitive equation ocean model that assimilates satellite altimetry and SST data. The mean and fluctuations of the model Kuroshio transport agree well with the available observations. Analysis of model dynamic heights and velocity fields reveals three dominant eddy modes. The first mode describes a large eddy of 500 km in diameter, centered at 22 N. The second mode describes a pair of the north south counter-rotating eddies of400 km in diameter each, centered at 23 and 20 N, respectively. The third mode describes a pair of the east west counter-rotating eddies of300 km in diameter each, centered at 21 N. The associated velocity fields indicate eddies extending to 600 700 m in depth with vertical shears concentrated in the upper 400 m. All three modes and the model Kuroshio transport have similar dominant timescales of 70 150 days and generally are coherent. The decreased Kuroshio volume transports typically are associated with the impinging cyclonic eddies and the increased transports with the anticyclonic eddies. Selected drifter trajectories are presented to illustrate the three eddy modes and their correspondence with the varying Kuroshio transports.
- Physical and Dynamic Oceanography