Science Meetings

Salinity Variations on Synoptic Timescales Under the Pacific ITCZ
Kao, H. and Lagerloef, G. (18-Nov-15)

Sea surface salinity variations under the ITCZ on seasonal timescale has been studied in recent years due to more data available from Aquarius, SMOS satellites and Argo observations. On seasonal time scales, ITCZ is considered nearly in steady state. However, ITCZ in the central to eastern Pacific is highly active on synoptic timescales from May to October, with continuous breakdowns and re-forms. The life span of the ITCZ is observed from few days to three weeks. In this study, we generate the 1/3 degree daily salinity maps from Aquarius observations to analyze the salinity variations under the Pacific ITCZ on synoptic time scale and examine the salinity signature associated with the ITCZ activities. The daily meridional migration of the ocean surface salinity and the salinity gradients are analyzed in 2012, 2013 and 2014 during the ITCZ active season when is also the hurricane active season. The surface currents (i.e. North Equatorial Counter Currents and South Equatorial Currents) associated with the salinity variations will also be discussed in this study.