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Marine Science


[ 1] A 20-layer, 1/25 degrees nested Gulf of Mexico (GoM) Hybrid Coordinate Ocean Model (HYCOM) has been employed to examine the evolving three-dimensional ocean response to Hurricane Ivan during 14 - 16 September 2004. Results from several combinations of numerical experiments with and without assimilation of satellite-altimetry sea-surface height (SSH) are being analyzed and compared for the September 2004 hurricane period. A comparison of simulated zonal and meridional velocities using data assimilation shows improved agreement with profiler observations. The amplitude of the cold wake ( similar to 6 degrees C) produced by these simulations compared reasonably well with the observed changes in SST before and after the storm; however, the region of extreme cooling varied depending on the simulated location of the warm core eddy (WCE) that had detached from the Loop Current ( LC). While the simulated location of the WCE and LC in the assimilation runs agree better with satellite altimetry, the storm-induced SST cooling was 40% - 50% greater than the observed cooling. Overall, similar to 64% of the cooling was due to vertical mixing caused by turbulence generated from strong shear-stress across the base of the mixed layer. Vertical advection (upwelling) caused a significant portion of cooling (23.4%) in those runs that included data assimilation; a three fold increase from the nonassimilative runs (7%). This enhanced upper- ocean cooling was caused primarily by the prestorm thermal stratification; a shallower thermocline ( similar to 40 m) and a stronger upper- thermocline temperature gradient compared with the nonassimilative runs. In all the experiments the air-sea exchange was a small component of the mixed-layer heat budget which overall accounted for similar to 4%


©Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans
DOI: 10.1029/2006JC003695

Publication Title

Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans





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