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Talley, LD, Rosso I, Kamenkovich I, Mazloff MR, Wang J, Boss E, Gray AR, Johnson KS, Key RM, Riser SC, Williams NL, Sarmiento JL.  2019.  Southern Ocean biogeochemical float deployment strategy, with example from the Greenwich meridian line (GO-SHIP A12). Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 124:403-431.   10.1029/2018jc014059   AbstractWebsite

Biogeochemical Argo floats, profiling to 2,000-m depth, are being deployed throughout the Southern Ocean by the Southern Ocean Carbon and Climate Observations and Modeling program (SOCCOM). The goal is 200 floats by 2020, to provide the first full set of annual cycles of carbon, oxygen, nitrate, and optical properties across multiple oceanographic regimes. Building from no prior coverage to a sparse array, deployments are based on prior knowledge of water mass properties, mean frontal locations, mean circulation and eddy variability, winds, air-sea heat/freshwater/carbon exchange, prior Argo trajectories, and float simulations in the Southern Ocean State Estimate and Hybrid Coordinate Ocean Model (HYCOM). Twelve floats deployed from the 2014-2015 Polarstern cruise from South Africa to Antarctica are used as a test case to evaluate the deployment strategy adopted for SOCCOM's 20 deployment cruises and 126 floats to date. After several years, these floats continue to represent the deployment zones targeted in advance: (1) Weddell Gyre sea ice zone, observing the Antarctic Slope Front, and a decadally-rare polynya over Maud Rise; (2) Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) including the topographically steered Southern Zone chimney where upwelling carbon/nutrient-rich deep waters produce surprisingly large carbon dioxide outgassing; (3) Subantarctic and Subtropical zones between the ACC and Africa; and (4) Cape Basin. Argo floats and eddy-resolving HYCOM simulations were the best predictors of individual SOCCOM float pathways, with uncertainty after 2years of order 1,000km in the sea ice zone and more than double that in and north of the ACC.

Llanillo, PJ, Pelegri JL, Talley LD, Pena-Izquierdo J, Cordero RR.  2018.  Oxygen pathways and budget for the Eastern South Pacific Oxygen Minimum Zone. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 123:1722-1744.   10.1002/2017jc013509   AbstractWebsite

Ventilation of the eastern South Pacific Oxygen Minimum Zone (ESP-OMZ) is quantified using climatological Argo and dissolved oxygen data, combined with reanalysis wind stress data. We (1) estimate all oxygen fluxes (advection and turbulent diffusion) ventilating this OMZ, (2) quantify for the first time the oxygen contribution from the subtropical versus the traditionally studied tropical-equatorial pathway, and (3) derive a refined annual-mean oxygen budget for the ESP-OMZ. In the upper OMZ layer, net oxygen supply is dominated by tropical-equatorial advection, with more than one-third of this supply upwelling into the Ekman layer through previously unevaluated vertical advection, within the overturning component of the regional Subtropical Cell (STC). Below the STC, at the OMZ's core, advection is weak and turbulent diffusion (isoneutral and dianeutral) accounts for 89% of the net oxygen supply, most of it coming from the oxygen-rich subtropical gyre. In the deep OMZ layer, net oxygen supply occurs only through turbulent diffusion and is dominated by the tropical-equatorial pathway. Considering the entire OMZ, net oxygen supply (3.8 +/- 0.42 mu mol kg(-1) yr(-1)) is dominated by isoneutral turbulent diffusion (56.5%, split into 32.3% of tropical-equatorial origin and 24.2% of subtropical origin), followed by isoneutral advection (32.0%, split into 27.6% of tropical-equatorial origin and 4.4% of subtropical origin) and dianeutral diffusion (11.5%). One-quarter (25.8%) of the net oxygen input escapes through dianeutral advection (most of it upwelling) and, assuming steady state, biological consumption is responsible for most of the oxygen loss (74.2%).

Holte, J, Talley LD, Gilson J, Roemmich D.  2017.  An Argo mixed layer climatology and database. Geophysical Research Letters. 44:5618-5626.   10.1002/2017gl073426   AbstractWebsite

A global climatology and database of mixed layer properties are computed from nearly 1,250,000 Argo profiles. The climatology is calculated with both a hybrid algorithm for detecting the mixed layer depth (MLD) and a standard threshold method. The climatology provides accurate information about the depth, properties, extent, and seasonal patterns of global mixed layers. The individual profile results in the database can be used to construct time series of mixed layer properties in specific regions of interest. The climatology and database are available online at . The MLDs calculated by the hybrid algorithm are shallower and generally more accurate than those of the threshold method, particularly in regions of deep winter mixed layers; the new climatology differs the most from existing mixed layer climatologies in these regions. Examples are presented from the Labrador and Irminger Seas, the Southern Ocean, and the North Atlantic Ocean near the Gulf Stream. In these regions the threshold method tends to overestimate winter MLDs by approximately 10% compared to the algorithm.

Billheimer, S, Talley LD.  2016.  Annual cycle and destruction of Eighteen Degree Water. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 121:6604-6617.   10.1002/2016jc011799   AbstractWebsite

Eighteen Degree Water (EDW), the subtropical mode water of the western North Atlantic, is a voluminous, weakly stratified upper ocean water mass that acts as a subsurface reservoir of heat, nutrients, and CO2. This thick layer persists throughout the year, but nearly half of its volume is dispersed or mixed away, diffusing its properties into the thermocline, from the time it outcrops in winter until it is renewed the following year. CTD observations from Argo profiling floats and acoustically tracked, isothermally bound profiling floats are used to quantify EDW destruction rates and investigate the relevant processes responsible for the large annual cycle of EDW. EDW destruction occurs primarily at the top of the EDW layer, with the highest EDW destruction rates occurring during early summer. Slower, steadier EDW destruction is observed in early winter. EDW destruction is dominated by 1-D vertical diffusion, while mesoscale, along-isopycnal stirring is also significant, explaining approximately 1/3 of the total annual EDW destruction. Destruction via along-isopycnal processes is more prevalent near the Gulf Stream than in the southern Sargasso Sea, due to higher potential vorticity gradients and enhanced mesoscale activity.

Chereskin, TK, Talley LD, Sloyan BM.  2010.  Nonlinear vorticity balance of the Subantarctic Front in the southeast Pacific. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 115   10.1029/2009jc005611   AbstractWebsite

Direct velocity observations from shipboard and lowered acoustic Doppler current profilers are used to examine the velocity and vorticity structure of the Subantarctic Front (SAF) between the East Pacific Rise and Drake Passage from surveys made in 2005 and 2006. The SAF is characterized by meanders of horizontal wavelength approximately 250-300 km in this region of relatively smooth topography. The depth-averaged SAF jet is observed to be closely aligned with the flow at 150 m, as in an equivalent barotropic flow. The barotropic or depth-averaged vorticity exhibits a balance between advection of planetary vorticity and relative vorticity, as would be seen in a Doppler-shifted short barotropic Rossby wave in a mean flow. The implied wave speed is consistent with the observed range of current speeds. An exponential fit to the vertical structure of the current consistent with the vorticity balance suggests a vertical decay scale of about 1900 m. The vorticity balance at 150 m implies a surface divergence which must be balanced at depth by a divergence of the opposite sign. The calculation confirms the tentative conclusions of Hughes (2005) for this region, which were based on a surface climatology but indicates a larger vertical decay scale and wave speed.

Brambilla, E, Talley LD, Robbins PE.  2008.  Subpolar Mode Water in the northeastern Atlantic: 2. Origin and transformation. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 113   10.1029/2006jc004063   AbstractWebsite

The processes that lead to the transformation and origin of the eastern North Atlantic Subpolar Mode Waters (SPMW) are investigated from observational data using an extended Walin framework. Air-sea flux data from the National Oceanography Center, Southampton (NOCS), and hydrographic data from the A24 cruise collected during the World Ocean Circulation Experiment (WOCE) are used to estimate the contribution of diapycnal and isopycnal fluxes to the density classes that include SPMW. Surface diapycnal volume flux is the dominant source of waters in the SPMW density. In the North Atlantic subpolar gyre the diapycnal volume flux occurs along the main branches of the North Atlantic Current (NAC) and it has an average transport of 14 +/- 6.5 Sv, with a maximum of 21.5 Sv across the 27.35(sigma theta) isopycnal. The regional distribution of the diapycnal flux on isopycnal surfaces is computed to identify the areas with the largest diapycnal flux. These regions coincide with the location of SPMW based on potential vorticity. The surface diapycnal flux is associated with obduction and subduction through the permanent pycnocline. Therefore, the water involved in the transformation of SPMWs is continuously exchanged with the ocean interior. In addition, we suggest that subduction is not associated with smooth advection from the mixed layer to the ocean interior, but is water mass loss entrainment into the deep overflows of the subpolar gyre. The isopycnal component of the SPMW throughput is estimated from the geostrophic transport across the A24 section from Greenland to Scotland and is 10% to 40% of the diapycnal flux.

Shcherbina, AY, Talley LD, Rudnick DL.  2004.  Dense water formation on the northwestern shelf of the Okhotsk Sea: 2. Quantifying the transports. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 109   10.1029/2003jc002197   AbstractWebsite

A combination of direct bottom mooring measurements, hydrographic and satellite observations, and meteorological reanalysis was used to estimate the rate of formation of Dense Shelf Water (DSW) due to brine rejection on the Okhotsk Sea northwestern shelf and the rate of export of DSW from this region. On the basis of remote sensing data, an estimated 8.6x10(12) m(3) of DSW was formed during the winter of 1999-2000, resulting in a mean annual production rate of 0.3 Sv. According to direct observations, the export rate of DSW during this period varied from negligibly small in autumn to 0.75+/-0.27 Sv in winter (January-February), to 0.34+/-0.12 Sv in spring (March-April). From these observations the mean annual export rate can be estimated to be 0.27 Sv. The same relationships used to obtain the integral estimates were also applied differentially using an advective approach incorporating realistic flow and heat flux fields, which allowed direct comparison with the moored observations. The comparison highlights the importance of along-shelf advection and cross-shelf eddy transport to the accurate parameterization of DSW formation.

Tishchenko, PY, Talley LD, Lobanov VB, Zhabin IA, Luchm VA, Nedashkovskii AP, Sagalaev SG, Chichkin RV, Shkirnikova EM, Ponomarev VI, Masten D, Kang DJ, Kim KR.  2003.  Seasonal variability of the hydrochemical conditions in the sea of Japan. Oceanology. 43:643-655. AbstractWebsite

In the summer of 1999 and the winter of 2000, during international expeditions of R/Vs Professor Khromov and Roger Revelle, hydrological and hydrochemical studies of the Sea of Japan were performed. Comparing the hydrochemical characteristics of the Sea of Japan in the summer and winter seasons, we have found that the seasonal variability affects not only the upper quasihomogeneous layer but also the deeper layers. This variability is caused by the intensification of vertical mixing during the winter season. It was shown that the mixing intensification in the deep layers of the sea in the winter might be caused both by the slope convection and by the deep convection in the open part of the sea, penetrating deeper than 1000 in. It was found that the area of positive values of the biological constituent of the apparent oxygen consumption coincides with the area of deep convection. The climatic zoning in the distribution of partial pressure of carbon dioxide was revealed for both seasons. In the northwestern part of the sea, carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere due to the deep convection in the winter and the heating process in the summer. The southern part of the sea absorbs the atmospheric carbon dioxide because of the process of photosynthesis and cooling of the waters supplied from the Korea Strait.

Alley, RB, Marotzke J, Nordhaus WD, Overpeck JT, Peteet DM, Pielke RA, Pierrehumbert RT, Rhines PB, Stocker TF, Talley LD, Wallace JM.  2003.  Abrupt climate change. Science. 299:2005-2010.   10.1126/science.1081056   AbstractWebsite

Large, abrupt, and widespread climate changes with major impacts have occurred repeatedly in the past, when the Earth system was forced across thresholds. Although abrupt climate changes can occur for many reasons, it is conceivable that human forcing of climate change is increasing the probability of large, abrupt events. Were such an event to recur, the economic and ecological impacts could be large and potentially serious. Unpredictability exhibited near climate thresholds in simple models shows that some uncertainty will always be associated with projections. In light of these uncertainties, policy-makers should consider expanding research into abrupt climate change, improving monitoring systems, and taking actions designed to enhance the adaptability and resilience of ecosystems and economies.

Flatau, MK, Talley L, Niiler PP.  2003.  The North Atlantic Oscillation, surface current velocities, and SST changes in the subpolar North Atlantic. Journal of Climate. 16:2355-2369.   10.1175/2787.1   AbstractWebsite

Changes in surface circulation in the subpolar North Atlantic are documented for the recent interannual switch in the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) index from positive values in the early 1990s to negative values in 1995/96. Data from Lagrangian drifters, which were deployed in the North Atlantic from 1992 to 1998, were used to compute the mean and varying surface currents. NCEP winds were used to calculate the Ekman component, allowing isolation of the geostrophic currents. The mean Ekman velocities are considerably smaller than the mean total velocities that resemble historical analyses. The northeastward flow of the North Atlantic Current is organized into three strong cores associated with topography: along the eastern boundary in Rockall Trough, in the Iceland Basin ( the subpolar front), and on the western flank of the Reykjanes Ridge (Irminger Current). The last is isolated in this Eulerian mean from the rest of the North Atlantic Current by a region of weak velocities on the east side of the Reykjanes Ridge. The drifter results during the two different NAO periods are compared with geostrophic flow changes calculated from the NASA/Pathfinder monthly gridded sea surface height (SSH) variability products and the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) SST data. During the positive NAO years the northeastward flow in the North Atlantic Current appeared stronger and the circulation in the cyclonic gyre in the Irminger Basin became more intense. This was consistent with the geostrophic velocities calculated from altimetry data and surface temperature changes from AVHRR SST data, which show that during the positive NAO years, with stronger westerlies, the subpolar front was sharper and located farther east. SST gradients intensified in the North Atlantic Current, Irminger Basin, and east of the Shetland Islands during the positive NAO phase, associated with stronger currents. SST differences between positive and negative NAO years were consistent with changes in air-sea heat flux and the eastward shift of the subpolar front. SST advection, as diagnosed from the drifters, likely acted to reduce the SST differences.

Talley, LD, Lobanov V, Ponomarev V, Salyuk A, Tishchenko P, Zhabin I, Riser S.  2003.  Deep convection and brine rejection in the Japan Sea. Geophysical Research Letters. 30   10.1029/2002gl016451   AbstractWebsite

Direct water mass renewal through convection deeper than 1000 m and the independent process of dense water production through brine rejection during sea ice formation occur at only a limited number of sites globally. Our late winter observations in 2000 and 2001 show that the Japan (East) Sea is a part of both exclusive groups. Japan Sea deep convection apparently occurs every winter, but massive renewal of bottom waters through brine rejection had not occurred for many decades prior to the extremely cold winter of 2001. The sites for both renewal mechanisms are south of Vladivostok, in the path of cold continental air outbreaks.

Shcherbina, AY, Talley LD, Rudnick DL.  2003.  Direct observations of North Pacific ventilation: Brine rejection in the Okhotsk Sea. Science. 302:1952-1955.   10.1126/science.1088692   AbstractWebsite

Brine rejection that accompanies ice formation in coastal polynyas is responsible for ventilating several globally important water masses in the Arctic and Antarctic. However, most previous studies of this process have been indirect, based on heat budget analyses or on warm-season water column inventories. Here, we present direct measurements of brine rejection and formation of North Pacific Intermediate Water in the Okhotsk Sea from moored winter observations. A steady, nearly linear salinity increase unambiguously caused by local ice formation was observed for more than a month.

Yun, JY, Talley LD.  2003.  Cabbeling and the density of the North Pacific Intermediate Water quantified by an inverse method. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 108   10.1029/2002jc001482   AbstractWebsite

North Pacific Intermediate Water (NPIW), defined as the main salinity minimum in the subtropical North Pacific, at a density of 26.7-26.8sigma(theta), is denser than the winter surface water in the Oyashio which is the source of the salinity minimum. We showed previously that cabbeling and double diffusion during mixing between the Oyashio water and more saline Kuroshio water can account for the density increase from the surface source water to the salinity minimum. An inverse method is employed herein to quantify the effect of cabbeling, using CTD data from the western North Pacific. The difference between proportional mixing between parcels of Oyashio and Kuroshio waters and mixing along isopycnals is exploited to compute the convergence of water into density layers. The diapycnal transport convergence associated with cabbeling into the NPIW density layer is estimated to be 0.56 Sv for an assumed turnover time of 1 year in the region between 142degreesE and 152degreesE. Diapycnal transport convergences in the regions 152degreesE-165degreesE, 165degreesE-175degreesW, and 175degreesW-136degreesW are similarly estimated by assuming longer turnover times. We estimate that the total diapycnal transport convergence into the NPIW density layer may be up to 2.3 Sv in the entire NPIW region.

Flatau, M, Talley L, Musgrave D.  2000.  Interannual variability in the Gulf of Alaska during the 1991-94 El Nino. Journal of Climate. 13:1664-1673.   10.1175/1520-0442(2000)013<1664:ivitgo>;2   AbstractWebsite

Mass and heat budgets in the Gulf of Alaska during the 1991-94 El Nino are examined using hydrographic data from several cruises undertaken as part of the International North Pacific Ocean Climate program and the repeated Canadian hydrographic sections out to Ocean weather Station Papa. The geostrophic ocean circulation resulted in convergence of heat into the region in spring 1992 and spring 1993. The advective heat convergence in spring 1992 corresponded to an average surface heat flux from the ocean to the atmosphere of about 74 W m(-2) in comparison with only 30 W m(-2) during spring 1993. The larger ocean heat loss to the atmosphere in 1992 followed a winter of large tropical SST anomalies and anomalously low pressure in the Aleutian low.

Tsuchiya, M, Talley LD.  1998.  A Pacific hydrographic section at 88 degrees W: Water-property distribution. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 103:12899-12918.   10.1029/97jc03415   AbstractWebsite

Full-depth conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD)/hydrographic measurements with high horizontal and vertical resolution were made in February-April 1993 along a line lying at a nominal longitude of 88 degrees W and extending from southern Chile (54 degrees S) to Guatemala (14 degrees N). It crossed five major deep basins (Southeast Pacific, Chile, Peru, Panama, and Guatemala basins) east of the East Pacific Rise. Vertical sections of potential temperature, salinity, potential density, oxygen, silica, phosphate, nitrate, and nitrite are presented to illustrate the structure of the entire water column. Some features of interest found in the sections are described, and an attempt is made to interpret them in terms of the isopycnal property distributions associated with the large-scale ocean circulation. These features include: various near-surface waters observed in the tropical and subtropical regions and the fronts that mark the boundaries of these waters; the possible importance of salt fingering to the downward salt transfer from the high-salinity subtropical water; a shallow thermostad (pycnostad) developed at 16 degrees-18.5 degrees C in the subtropical water; low-salinity surface water in the subantarctic zone west of southern Chile; large domains of extremely low oxygen in the subpycnocline layer on both sides of the equator and a secondary nitrite maximum associated with a nitrate minimum in these low-oxygen domains; high-salinity, low-oxygen, high-nutrient subpycnocline water that is carried poleward along the eastern boundary by the Peru-Chile Undercurrent; the Subantarctic Mode and Antarctic Intermediate waters; middepth isopycnal property extrema observed at the crest of the Sala y Gomez Ridge; influences of the North Pacific and the North Atlantic upon deep waters along the section; and the characteristics and sources of the bottom waters in the five deep basins along the section.

McCarthy, MC, Talley LD, Baringer MO.  1997.  Deep upwelling and diffusivity in the southern Central Indian Basin. Geophysical Research Letters. 24:2801-2804.   10.1029/97gl02112   AbstractWebsite

Transport of the deepest water westward through a gap at 28 degrees S in the Ninetyeast Ridge between the Central Indian Basin and the West Australia Basin is calculated from hydrographic data collected as part of WOCE Hydrographic Program section I8N. Zero reference velocity levels at mid-depth were chosen through consideration of water masses. The small transport of 1.0 Sv westward of water denser than sigma(4) = 45.92 kg m(-3) through the gap must all upwell in the southern Central Indian Basin. Of this, 0.7 Sv upwells between the central and western sill sections, that is, close to the sill itself. Using the areas covered by the isopycnal, we calculate an average vertical velocity of 3.3 . 10(-3) cm s(-1) close to the sill and of 4.2 . 10(-4) cm s(-1) west of the sill. Associated average vertical diffusivities are 105 cm(2) s(-1) close to the sill and 13 cm(2) s(-1) west of the sill, in this bottom layer.

Talley, LD.  1996.  North Atlantic circulation and variability, reviewed for the CNLS conference. Physica D. 98:625-646.   10.1016/0167-2789(96)00123-6   AbstractWebsite

The circulation and water mass structure of the North Atlantic are reviewed, with emphasis on the large-scale overturning cell which produces North Atlantic Deep Water (NADW). Properties and transports for its major components (Nordic Seas Overflow Water, Labrador Sea Water, Mediterranean Water, Antarctic Intermediate Water and Antarctic Bottom Water) are reviewed. The transport estimates and properties of NADW coupled with the observed meridional heat transport in the Atlantic limit the temperature of northward flow which replenishes the NADW to the range 11-15 degrees C. The high salinity of the North Atlantic compared with other ocean basins is important for its production of intermediate and deep waters; about one third of its higher evaporation compared with the North Pacific is due to the Mediterranean. The evaporation/precipitation balance for the North Atlantic is similar to the Indian and South Atlantic Oceans; the difference between the North and South Atlantic may be that high evaporation in the North Atlantic affects much greater depths through Mediterranean Water production. Also described briefly is variability of water properties in the upper layers of the subtropical/subpolar North Atlantic, as linked to the North Atlantic Oscillation. The oceanographic time series at Bermuda is then used to show decadal variations in the properties of the Subtropical Mode Water, a thick layer which lies in the upper 500 m. Salinity of this layer and at the sea surface increases during periods when the North Atlantic westerlies weaken between Iceland and the Azores and shift southwestward. (The North Atlantic Oscillation index is low during these periods). Temperature at the surface and in this layer are slightly negatively correlated with salinity, decreasing when salinity increases. It is hypothesized that the salinity increases result from incursion of saline water from the eastern subtropical gyre forced by the southward migration of the westerlies, and that the small temperature decreases are due to increased convection in the Sargasso Sea, also resulting from the southward shift of the westerlies.

Tsuchiya, M, Talley LD.  1996.  Water-property distributions along an eastern Pacific hydrographic section at 135W. Journal of Marine Research. 54:541-564.   10.1357/0022240963213583   AbstractWebsite

As part of the World Ocean Circulation Experiment, full-depth CTD/hydrographic measurements with high horizontal and vertical resolutions were made in June-August 1991 along a line extending from 34N to 33S at a nominal longitude of 135W with an additional short leg that connects it to the California coast roughly along 34N. The line spans the major part of the subtropical and intertropical circulation regime of the eastern North and South Pacific. The primary purpose of this paper is to present vertical sections of various properties from CTD and discrete water-sample measurements along this line and to give an overview of some important features as a basis for more comprehensive basin-scale studies. These features include: the frontal structures found in the surface-layer salinity field in the North Pacific; relatively high-salinity water that dominates the subpycnocline layer between the equator and 17N; troughs of the subpycnocline isopycnals for 26.8-27.5 sigma(theta) found at 12N and 12.5S; a permanent thermostad at 9-10 degrees C observed between 4.5N and 15N; the pycnostad of the Subantarctic Mode Water centered at 27.0-27.05 sigma(theta) and developed south of 22S; two types of the Antarctic Intermediate Water representing the subtropical and equatorial circulation regimes; a thick tongue of high silica centered at 3000 m (45.8 sigma(4)) and extending southward across the entire section; deep (2000-3000 m) westward flows at 5-8N and 10-15S separated by an eastward flow at 1-2S; and dense, cold, oxygen-rich, nutrient-poor bottom waters, which are associated with fracture zones and believed to represent the pathways of eastward flows into the Northeast Pacific Basin of the bottom waters separated from the northward-flowing western boundary undercurrent. This work once again demonstrates the usefulness of long lines of high-quality, high-resolution hydrographic stations such as the one described herein in advancing the understanding of the large-scale ocean circulation.

Yuan, XJ, Talley LD.  1996.  The subarctic frontal zone in the North Pacific: Characteristics of frontal structure from climatological data and synoptic surveys. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 101:16491-16508.   10.1029/96jc01249   AbstractWebsite

The subarctic front is a thermohaline structure across the North Pacific, separating colder, fresher water to the north from warmer, saltier water to the south. Levitus's [1982] data and 72 conductivity-temperature-depth/salinity-temperature-depth sections are used to show the spatial and seasonal variations of the climatological frontal zone and the characteristics of the frontal structure in synoptic surveys. The temperature gradient in the mean frontal zone is stronger in the western Pacific and decreases eastward, while the salinity gradient has less variation across the Pacific. The temperature gradient also has larger seasonal variation, with a maximum in spring, than the salinity gradient. The synoptic surveys show that the frontal zone is narrower and individual fronts tend to be stronger in the western Pacific than in the eastern Pacific. Density gradients tend to be more compensated at the strongest salinity fronts than at the strongest temperature fronts. A horizontal minimum of vertical stability is found south of the subarctic halocline outcrop. The northern boundary of the North Pacific Intermediate Water merges with the frontal zone west of 175 degrees W and is north of the northern boundary of the subarctic frontal zone in the eastern Pacific. The shallow salinity minima start within the subarctic frontal zone in the eastern Pacific.

Suga, T, Talley LD.  1995.  Antarctic Intermediate Water Circulation in the Tropical and Subtropical South-Atlantic. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 100:13441-13453.   10.1029/95jc00858   AbstractWebsite

Recent hydrographic data from the South Atlantic Ventilation Experiment cruises and others are combined with historical data and used to map the isopycnal properties corresponding to the Antarctic Intermediate Water (AAIW) in the Atlantic Ocean. The low salinity of the AAIW extends eastward across the South Atlantic just south of the equator (3-4 degrees S). Evidence of a weak eastward flow just north of the equator (1-2 degrees N) is also shown. Lateral and vertical homogenization of properties in the AAIW is found at the equator between 2 degrees S and 2 degrees N; there is no clear zonal gradient in salinity just along the equator. These observations suggest enhanced mixing within the equatorial baroclinic deformation radius. The South Atlantic tropical gyre is shown to consist of the following three cells: one cyclonic cell centered at about 7 degrees S, another centered at about 19 degrees S in the west and 23 degrees S in the east, and one anticyclonic cell centered at about 13 degrees S. These cells are associated with a westward extension at 10 degrees S of high salinity and low oxygen which originates in the eastern tropical South Atlantic and a front in these properties at about 15 degrees S in the west and about 20 degrees S in the east.

Tsuchiya, M, Talley LD, McCartney MS.  1994.  Water-Mass Distributions in the Western South-Atlantic - a Section from South Georgia Island (54s) Northward across the Equator. Journal of Marine Research. 52:55-&.   10.1357/0022240943076759   AbstractWebsite

A long CTD/hydrographic section with closely spaced stations was made in February-April 1989 in the western Atlantic Ocean between 0-degrees-40'N and South Georgia (54S) along a nominal longitude of 25W. Vertical sections of various properties from CTD and discrete water-sample measurements are presented and discussed in terms of the large-scale circulation of the South Atlantic Ocean. One of the most important results is the identification of various deep-reaching fronts in relation to the large-scale circulation and the distribution of mode waters. Five major fronts are clearly defined in the thermal and salinity fields. These are the Polar (49.5S), Subantarctic (45S), Subtropical (41-42S), Brazil Current (35S) Fronts, and an additional front at 20-22S. The first three are associated with strong baroclinic shear. The Brazil Current Front is a boundary between the denser and lighter types of the Subantarctic Mode Water (SAMW), and the 20-22S front marks the boundary between the anticyclonic subtropical and cyclonic subequatorial gyres. The latter front coincides with the northern terminus of the high-oxygen tongue of the Antarctic Intermediate Water (AAIW) and also with the abrupt shift in density of the high-silica tongue originating in the Upper Circumpolar Water and extending northward. Two pycnostads with temperatures 20-24-degrees-C are observed between 10S and 25S with the denser one in the subtropical and the other lighter one in the subequatorial gyre. A weak thermostad centered at 4-degrees-C occurs in the AAIW between the Subtropical Front and the Subantarctic Front and shows characteristics similar to the densest variety of the SAMW. Another significant result is a detailed description of the complex structure of the deep and bottom waters. The North Atlantic Deep Water (NADW) north of 25S contains two vertical maxima of oxygen (at 2000 m and 3700 m near the equator) separated by intervening low-oxygen water with more influence from the Circumpolar Water. Each maximum is associated with a maximum of salinity and minima of nutrients. The deeper salinity maximum is only weakly defined and is limited to north of 18S, appearing more as vertically uniform salinity. South of 25S the NADW shows only a single maximum of salinity, a single maximum of oxygen, and a single minimum of each nutrient, all lying close together. The salinity maximum south of 25S and the deeper oxygen/salinity maximum north of 1 IS are derived from the same source waters. The less dense NADW containing the shallower extrema of characteristics turns to the east at lower latitudes and does not reach the region south of 25S. The southward spreading of the NADW is interrupted by domains of intensified circumpolar characteristics. This structure is closely related to the basin-scale gyre circulation pattern. The Weddell Sea Deep Water is the densest water we observed and forms a relatively homogeneous layer at the bottom of the Georgia and Argentine Basins. The bottom layer of the Brazil Basin is occupied by the vertically and laterally homogeneous Lower Circumpolar Water.

Talley, LD.  1993.  Distribution and Formation of North Pacific Intermediate Water. Journal of Physical Oceanography. 23:517-537.   10.1175/1520-0485(1993)023<0517:dafonp>;2   AbstractWebsite

The North Pacific Intermediate Water (NPIW), defined as the main salinity minimum in the subtropical North Pacific, is examined with respect to its overall property distributions. These suggest that NPIW is formed only in the northwestern subtropical gyre; that is, in the mixed water region between the Kuroshio Extension and Oyashio front. Subsequent modification along its advective path increases its salinity and reduces its oxygen. The mixed water region is studied using all bottle data available from the National Oceanographic Data Center, with particular emphasis on several winters. Waters from the Oyashio, Kuroshio, and the Tsugaru Warm Current influence the mixed water region, with a well-defined local surface water mass formed as a mixture of the surface waters from these three sources. Significant salinity minima in the mixed water region are grouped into those that are directly related to the winter surface density and are found at the base of the oxygen-saturated surface layer, and those that form deeper, around warm core rings. Both could be a source of the more uniform NPIW to the east, the former through preferential erosion of the minima from the top and the latter through simple advection. Both sources could exist all year with a narrowly defined density range that depends on winter mixed-layer density in the Oyashio region.

Tsuchiya, M, Talley LD, McCartney MS.  1992.  An Eastern Atlantic Section from Iceland Southward across the Equator. Deep-Sea Research Part a-Oceanographic Research Papers. 39:1885-1917.   10.1016/0198-0149(92)90004-d   AbstractWebsite

A long CTD/hydrographic section with closely-spaced stations was occupied in July-August 1988 from Iceland southward to 3-degrees-S along a nominal longitude of 20-degrees-W. The section extends from the surface down to the bottom, and spans the entire mid-ocean circulation regime of the North Atlantic from the subpolar gyre through the subtropical gyre and the equatorial currents. Vertical sections of potential temperature, salinity and potential density from CTD measurements and of oxygen, silica, phosphate and nitrate, based on discrete water-sample measurements are presented and discussed in the context of the large-scale circulation of the North Atlantic Ocean. The close spacing of high-quality stations reveals some features not described previously. The more important findings include: (1) possible recirculation of the lightest Subpolar Mode Water into the tropics; (2) a thermostad at temperatures of 8-9-degrees-C, lying below that of the Equatorial 13-degrees-C Water; (3) the nutrient distribution in the low-salinity water above the Mediterranean Outflow Water that supports the previous conjecture of northern influence of the Antarctic Intermediate Water; (4) a great deal of lateral structure of the Mediterranean Outflow Water, with a number of lobes of high salinity; (5) an abrupt southern boundary of the Labrador Sea Water at the Azores-Biscay Rise and a vertically well-mixed region to its south; (6) a sharp demarcation in the central Iceland Basin between the newest Iceland-Scotland Overflow Water and older bottom water, which has a significant component of southern water; (7) evidence that the Northeast Atlantic Deep Water is a mixture of the Mediterranean Outflow Water and the Northwest Atlantic Bottom Water with very little input from the Iceland-Scotland Overflow Water; (8) an isolated core of the high-salinity, low-silica Upper North Atlantic Deep Water at the equator; (9) a core of the high-oxygen, low-nutrient Lower North Atlantic Deep Water pressed against the southern flank of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge just south of the equator; (10) a weak minimum of salinity, and well-defined maxima of nutrients associated with the oxygen minimum that separates the Middle and Lower North Atlantic Deep Waters south of the equator; (11) a large body of nearly homogeneous water beneath the Middle North Atlantic Deep Water between 20-degrees-N and the Azores-Biscay Rise; and (12) a deep westward boundary undercurrent on the southern slope of the Rockall Plateau.

Yuan, XJ, Talley LD.  1992.  Shallow Salinity Minima in the North Pacific. Journal of Physical Oceanography. 22:1302-1316.   10.1175/1520-0485(1992)022<1302:ssmitn>;2   AbstractWebsite

CTD/STD data from 24 cruises in the North Pacific are studied for their vertical salinity structure and compared to bottle observations. A triple-salinity minimum is found in two separated regions in the eastern North Pacific. In the first region, bounded by the northern edge of the subarctic frontal zone and the 34-degrees-N front between 160-degrees and 150-degrees-W, a middle salinity minimum is found below the permanent pycnocline in the density range of 26.0 and 26.5 sigma(theta). This middle minimum underlies Reid's shallow salinity minimum and overlies the North Pacific Intermediate Water (NPIW). In the second region, southeast of the first, a seasonal salinity minimum appears above the shallow salinity minimum at densities lower than 25.1 sigma(theta). The shallow salinity minimum and the NPIW can be found throughout year, while the seasonal minimum only appears in summer and fall. The middle and shallow salinity minima, as well as the seasonal minimum, originate at the sea surface in the northeast Pacific. The properties at the minima depend on the surface conditions in their source areas. The source of the middle minimum is the winter surface water in a narrow band between the gyre boundary and the subarctic front west of 170-degrees-W. The shallow salinity minimum is generated in winter and is present throughout the year. The seasonal salinity minimum has the same source area as the shallow salinity minimum but is formed in summer and fall at lower density and is not present in winter. A tropical shallow salinity minimum found south of 18-degrees-N does not appear to be connected with the shallow salinity minimum in the eastern North Pacific. South of 20-degrees-N, the shallow salinity minimum and the NPIW appear to merge into a thick, low salinity water mass. When an intrusion of high salinity water breaks through this low salinity water mass south of 18-degrees-N, this tropical salinity minimum appears at the same density as the shallow salinity minimum. Though the water mass of the tropical minimum is derived from the water in the shallow salinity minimum, the formation of the vertical minimum is different.

Talley, LD, Joyce TM.  1992.  The Double Silica Maximum in the North Pacific. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans. 97:5465-5480.   10.1029/92jc00037   AbstractWebsite

The North Pacific has two vertical silica maxima. The well-known intermediate maximum occurs between 2000 and 2500 m with a potential density relative to 2000 dbar of 36.90 in the northeastern Pacific. The deep maximum, which has not been observed extensively before, is found at or near the ocean bottom in the northern North Pacific in a narrow latitude range. Maps of silica on isopycnals which intersect the intermediate and bottom maxima show that the lowest silica is found in the western tropical North Pacific, suggesting a route for the spread of South Pacific water into the deep North Pacific. Low-silica water is found along the western boundary of the North Pacific, with a separate broad tongue south of Hawaii. The highest silica on both isopycnals is in the northeast Pacific. A bottom maximum in the Cascadia Basin in the northeastern Pacific can be differentiated from both open-ocean maxima. Four sources for the vertical maxima are considered: in situ dissolution of sinking panicles, bottom sediment dissolution, hydrothermal venting, and upslope advection in the northeastern Pacific. Because not enough is known about any of these sources, only rough estimates of their contributions can be made. The bottom maximum is most likely to result from bottom sediment dissolution but requires a flux larger than some current direct estimates. The Cascadia Basin bottom maximum may result from both bottom sediment dissolution and hydrothermal venting. The intermediate maximum is likely to result primarily from dissolution of sinking particles. There is no quantitative estimate of the effect of possible upslope advection or enhancement of bottom fluxes due to the Columbia River outflow.