Subsurface fine scale patterns in an anticyclonic eddy off Cap-Vert peninsula observed from glider measurements

Glider measurements acquired along 4 transects between Cap‐Vert Peninsula and the Cape Verde archipelago in the eastern tropical North Atlantic during March‐April 2014 were used to investigate fine‐scale stirring in an anticyclonic eddy. The anticyclone was formed near 12°N off the continental shelf and propagated north‐west towards the Cape Verde islands. At depth, between 100‐400 m, the isolated anticyclone core contained relatively oxygenated, low salinity South Atlantic Central Water, while the surrounding water masses were saltier and poorly oxygenated. The dynamical and thermohaline subsurface environment favored the generation of fine‐scale horizontal and vertical temperature and salinity structures in and around the core of the anticyclone. These features exhibited horizontal scales of O(10‐30 km) relatively small with respect to the eddy radius of O(150 km). The vertical scales of O(5‐100 m) were associated to density‐compensated gradient. Spectra of salinity and oxygen along isopycnals revealed a slope of around k‐2 in the 10‐100 km horizontal scale range. Further analyses suggest that the fine‐scale structures are likely related to tracer stirring processes. Such mesoscale anticyclonic eddies and the embedded fine‐scale tracers in and around them could play a major role in the transport of South Atlantic Central Water masses and ventilation of the North Atlantic Oxygen Minimum Zone.


submesoscale, stirring, tropical Atlantic, meoscale eddy, glider measurements, OMZ

Full Text

Publisher's official version
524 Mo
Figure S1
41 Mo
How to cite
Kolodziejczyk Nicolas, Testor Pierre, Lazar Alban, Echevin Vincent, Krahmann Gerd, Chaigneau Alexis, Gourcuff Claire, Wade Malick, Faye Saliou, Estrade Philippe, Capet Xavier, Mortier Laurent, Brehmer Patrice, Schuette Florian, Karstensen Johannes (2018). Subsurface fine scale patterns in an anticyclonic eddy off Cap-Vert peninsula observed from glider measurements. Journal Of Geophysical Research-oceans. 123 (9). 6312-6329.,

Copy this text