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Eddies and variability in the Mozambique Channel

Schouten, M. W., de Ruijter, W. P.M., Van Leeuwen, P. J. and Ridderinkhof, H. (2003) Eddies and variability in the Mozambique Channel. Deep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography, 50 (12-13). pp. 1987-2003. ISSN 09670645

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1016/S0967-0645(03)00042-0


Between 1995 and 2000, on average 4 eddies per year are observed from satellite altimetry to propagate southward through the Mozambique Channel, into the upstream Agulhas region. Further south, these eddies have been found to control the timing and frequenc yof Agulhas ring shedding. Within the Mozambique Channel, anomalous SSH amplitudes rise to 30 cm ; in agreement with in situ measured velocities. Comparison of an observed velocit ysection with GCM model results shows that the Mozambique Channel eddies in these models are too surface intensified. Also, the number of eddies formed in the models is in disagreement with our observational analysis. Moored current meter measurements observing the passage of three eddies in 2000 are extended to a 5-year time series b yreferencing the anomalous surface currents estimated from altimeter data to a s ynoptic LADCP velocit y measurement. The results show intermittent edd ypassage at the mooring location. A statistical analysis of SSH observations in different parts of the Mozambique Channel shows a southward decrease of the dominant frequency of the variability, going from 7 per year in the extension of the South Equatorial Current north of Madagascar to 4 per year south of Madagascar. The observations suggest that frequency reduction is related to the Rossb ywaves coming in from the east

Item Type:Article
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ID Code:60495

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