Science Meetings

Seasonal Freshwater Circulation in the Bay of Bengal
Wilson, E.A. and Riser, S. (26-Feb-14)

The Bay of Bengal, a quasi-marginal sea of the northeast Indian Ocean, receives large freshwater inputs from both precipitation and river runoff that vary significantly with the seasonal cycle of the monsoons. Over an annual cycle, the net freshwater input into the Bay is approximately 5000 cubic kilometers. To balance this input, freshwater must be removed from the near surface layer at a mean rate of roughly 0.16 Sverdrup. This relatively large transport of freshwater, which could be of major climatological importance, remains poorly understood. In this study, we attempt to construct a seasonal freshwater budget using output from the Hybrid Coordinate Ocean Model (HYCOM). In particular, we investigate the relative importance of boundary currents, vertical mixing, and large scale Ekman pumping in maintaining a closed freshwater budget.