JpGU-AGU Joint Meeting 2017

Presentation information

[EE] Oral

A (Atmospheric and Hydrospheric Sciences) » A-OS Ocean Sciences & Ocean Environment

[A-OS15] [EE] Ocean Mixing Matters

Sun. May 21, 2017 10:45 AM - 12:15 PM 302 (International Conference Hall 3F)

convener:Toshiyuki Hibiya(Department of Earth and Planetary Science, Graduate School of Science, University of Tokyo), Louis St Laurent(Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution), Ren-Chieh Lien(University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA), Robin Ann Robertson(University of New South Wales Canberra), Chairperson:Ren-Chieh Lien(University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA), Chairperson:Toshiyuki Hibiya(Department of Earth and Planetary Science, Graduate School of Science, The University of Tokyo)

11:30 AM - 11:45 AM

[AOS15-10] Submesoscale cascade processes in the S. China Sea

*Louis St Laurent1, Emily Shroyer2, Kipp Shearman2, Harper Simmons3, Craig Lee4, Ke-Hsien Fu5, Yu Huai Wang5 (1.Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 2.Oregon State University, 3.University of Alaska Fairbanks, 4.University of Washington, 5.National Sun Yat Sen University)

Keywords:Mixing, Monsoon, Cascade

The S. China Sea is understood to be one of the most energetic regional seas in the global ocean. The combination of the Kuroshio Current, the monsoon, strong tides, and the dramatic topography of the Luzon Strait lead to a rich physical forcing environment. In addition to the enhanced internal wave environment that has been the focus of much work (ASIAEX, NLIWI and IWISE), the region southwest of Taiwan has been documented as a maximum in eddy kinetic energy. However, outside of the realm of internal wave processes, the physics of the submesoscale cascade of energy has been poorly studied.

Here, we describe a new examination of submesoscale processes in the S. China Sea. The focus is on the class of oceanographic variability that is poorly constrained in models including eddies, vortices and filaments, and their interactions with smaller-scale phenomena (Fig. 1A). While the whole S. China Sea system is of interest, including the Vietnam East Sea, the initial survey work has focused on the region just southwest of Taiwan. In this region, the Kuroshio Current feeds warm-salty water through the Luzon Strait. As the Current meanders into the Luzon Strait, it sheds eddies and filaments, which in turn interact with the local wind forcing. Along the southern tip of Taiwan, the wind field is complicated by the blocking effects of high mountains on the eastern side of Taiwan, with easterly winds south of Taiwan, and northerly winds in the Taiwan Strait. This combination of eddies, filaments, and wind lead to an active submesoscale cascade.