Science Meetings

Salinity Fronts in the Tropical Pacific Ocean
Kao, H-Y. and Lagerloef, G. (13-Nov-13)

This study reveals the detailed structures and variations of salinity fronts (SF) in the tropical Pacific using Aquarius observations, specifically at the eastern edge of western Pacific fresh pool, south boundary of intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ) and the western edge of eastern Pacific fresh pool. The strong SFs are found to be the results of both strong precipitation and shear currents. Therefore, three features of the SFs are observed: (1) The largest horizontal salinity gradient appears around October. (2) The strong SF shows up more in the south boundary than the north boundary of the ITCZ. (3) Clear SFs appear at the ITCZ, but not at the South Pacific convergence zone (SPCZ). Further inspections of SFs regarding the ENSO-related variations in the western Pacific, strong SF allied with the thick barrier layer over the ITCZ and the double SFs corresponding to the double ITCZ in the eastern Pacific will also be discussed.