Preprint Review Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Subtropical Frontal Zone of the Southern Ocean

Version 1 : Received: 3 June 2021 / Approved: 7 June 2021 / Online: 7 June 2021 (13:12:51 CEST)

How to cite: Belkin, I.M. Subtropical Frontal Zone of the Southern Ocean. Preprints 2021, 2021060183 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202106.0183.v1). Belkin, I.M. Subtropical Frontal Zone of the Southern Ocean. Preprints 2021, 2021060183 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202106.0183.v1).

Abstract

This paper combines a literature survey and data analysis. The literature on the Subtropical Front (STF) in the Southern Ocean is reviewed with a two-pronged emphasis on the double-front structure of the STF, hence the existence of a subtropical frontal zone (STFZ), and the circumpolar continuity of the STFZ. The data analysis is based on the World Ocean Circulation Experiment (WOCE) sections. The STFZ is detected along each section independently from other sections, while moving circum-polarly downstream (eastward). The literature survey and data analysis confirm the circumpolar continuity of the STFZ extending from the Brazil Current across the South Atlantic, South Indian, and South Pacific up to Chile, being bound by the North and South STF. The circumpolar continuity of the STFZ is partly interrupted by South Africa and Tasmania, where the North STF ceases, while the South STF continues eastward. The South Atlantic STFZ is the southern boundary of the well-defined Subtropical Mode Water (STMW) thermostad, which cools eastward from 15°C to 11°C between the Brazil Current and Greenwich Meridian. In the southeast Pacific, the STFZ is the southern boundary of the 17-to-19°C thermostad (South Pacific Eastern STMW). The STFZ’s vertical extent is at maximum in the South Atlantic (>1000 m), decreasing eastward to 300 m in the southeast Pacific off Chile. A special attention is given to the South Pacific and the STFZ’s role in the ecology of Chilean jack mackerel Trachurus murphyi that spawn at the STFZ and migrate along the STFZ from Chile up to New Zealand.

Subject Areas

Front; Subtropical Front; Southern Ocean; Subtropical Frontal Zone; Subtropical Mode Water; Chilean jack mackerel; Trachurus murphyi

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