The net energy budget at the ocean-atmosphere interface of the "Cold Tongue" region

Type Article
Date 2017-07
Language English
Author(s) Pinker Rachel T.1, Bentamy Abderrahim2, Zhang Banglin1, Chen Wen1, Ma Yingtao1
Affiliation(s) 1 : Univ Maryland, Dept Atmospher & Ocean Sci, College Pk, MD 20742 USA.
2 : Inst Francais Rech Exploitat Mer, Plouzane, France.
Source Journal Of Geophysical Research-oceans (2169-9275) (Amer Geophysical Union), 2017-07 , Vol. 122 , N. 7 , P. 5502-5521
DOI 10.1002/2016JC012581
WOS© Times Cited 1
Keyword(s) turbulent fluxes, energy balance, Cold Tongue
Abstract

Pacific "Cold Tongue" (PCT) sea surface temperature (SST) experiences significant (>0.58 degrees C) interannual variations forced by the El-Nino Southern Oscillations (ENSO) with global impacts on the Earth climate. In this study, we estimate the PCT net heat budget known to be difficult to derive using numerical models. The main goal is to determine how accurately the net heat flux across the surface/atmosphere interface can currently be determined primarily, from satellite observations; these are first evaluated against the nearest available observations inside and outside the PCT of the Tropical Pacific Ocean, using buoy arrays such as the Tropical Atmosphere Ocean/Triangle Trans-Ocean Buoy Network (TAO/TRITON). It was found that the satellite-based estimates of both turbulent and radiative fluxes are in better agreement with the observations than similar estimates from leading numerical models. The monthly mean satellite estimates of PCT SW down arrow during January/July 2009 were 273.07/170.14, for LW down arrow, latent heat and sensible heat they were 378.79/365.54, 95.52/130.31, 9.89/20.67, respectively (all in W/m(2)). The estimated standard deviations for PCT SW down arrow were in the range of 7.2-7.8% of the mean and in the range of 2.0-2.5% for LW down arrow, at daily time scale. Satellite estimates of both PCT LHF and SHF exhibit much higher variability, characterized by standard deviations of 50% from the mean values.

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