Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Similarities and Contrasts in Stationary Striations of Surface Tracers in Pacific Eastern Boundary Upwelling Systems

Version 1 : Received: 6 June 2021 / Approved: 8 June 2021 / Online: 8 June 2021 (10:31:07 CEST)

How to cite: Belmadani, A.; Auger, P.; Gomez, K.; Maximenko, N.; Cravatte, S. Similarities and Contrasts in Stationary Striations of Surface Tracers in Pacific Eastern Boundary Upwelling Systems. Preprints 2021, 2021060207 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202106.0207.v1). Belmadani, A.; Auger, P.; Gomez, K.; Maximenko, N.; Cravatte, S. Similarities and Contrasts in Stationary Striations of Surface Tracers in Pacific Eastern Boundary Upwelling Systems. Preprints 2021, 2021060207 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202106.0207.v1).

Abstract

Eastern boundary upwelling systems feature strong zonal gradients of physical and biological ocean properties between cool, productive coastal oceans and warm, oligotrophic subtropical gyres. Zonal currents and jets (striations) are therefore likely to contribute to the transport of water properties between coastal and open oceanic regions. Multi-sensor satellite data are used to characterize the signatures of striations in sea surface temperature (SST), salinity (SSS), and chlorophyll-a (Chl-a) in subtropical eastern North/South Pacific (ENP/ESP) upwelling systems. In the ENP, tracers exhibit striated patterns extending up to ~2500 km offshore. Striations in SST and SSS are highly correlated with quasi-zonal jets, suggesting that these jets contribute to SST/SSS mesoscale patterns via zonal advection. Chl-a striations are collocated with sea surface height (SSH) bands, a possible result of mesoscale eddy trains trapping nutrients and forming striated signals. In the ESP, striations are only found in SST and coincide with SSH bands, consistently with quasi-zonal jets located outside major zonal tracer gradients. An interplay between large-scale SST/SSS advection by the quasi-zonal jets, mesoscale SST/SSS advection by the large-scale meridional flow and eddy advection may explain the persistent ENP hydrographic striations. These results underline the importance of quasi-zonal jets for surface tracer structuring at the mesoscale.

Subject Areas

striations; satellite data; sea surface temperature; sea surface salinity; chlorophyll-a; eastern boundaries; Pacific Ocean

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