Sea state trends and variability: consistency between models, altimeters, buoys, and seismic data (1979‐2016)

Type Article
Date 2019-06
Language English
Author(s) Stopa Justin1, 2, Ardhuin FabriceORCID5, Stutzmann Eleonore3, Lecocq Thomas4
Affiliation(s) 1 : Department of Ocean Resources and Engineering, School of Ocean and Earth Science and TechnologyUniversity of Hawaii at Manoa Honolulu, USA
2 : Univ. Brest, CNRS, IRD, Ifremer, Laboratoire d'Océanographie Physique et Spatiale (LOPS), IUEM Brest ,France
3 : Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris, CNRS‐UMR7480 Paris ,France
4 : Seismology‐Gravimetry, Royal Observatory of Belgium, Belgium
5 : Univ. Brest, CNRS, IRD, Ifremer, Laboratoire d'Océanographie Physique et Spatiale (LOPS), IUEM Brest ,France
Source Journal Of Geophysical Research-oceans (2169-9275) (American Geophysical Union (AGU)), 2019-06 , Vol. 124 , N. 6 , P. 3923-3940
DOI 10.1029/2018JC014607
WOS© Times Cited 25
Keyword(s) wave hindcasting, COWCLIP, seismic noise, long-term trends, Climate Forecast System Reanalysis, data homogeneity

Wave hindcasts of long time series (> 30 years) have been instrumental in understanding the wave climate. However it is still difficult to have a consistent reanalysis suitable for study of trends and inter‐annual variability. Here we explore the consistency of a wave hindcast with independent observations from moored buoys, satellite altimeters, and seismic data. We use the Climate Forecast System Reanalysis (CFSR) winds to drive a wave model since extreme events are generally well captured. Unfortunately the original CFSR winds are not homogeneous in time. We systematically modify this wind field in time and space to produce a wave field that has homogeneous differences against the Globwave/SeaStateCCI altimeter wave height database. These corrections to the winds and resulting waves are validated using independent buoy and microseism data. We particularly use seismic data in the dominant double‐frequency band, around 5 s period, that are generated by opposing waves of equal frequencies. The seismic data confirms that our correction of time‐varying biases is consistent, even in remote and under‐sampled region such as the Southern Ocean where the original CFSR biases are strongest. Our analysis is performed on monthly time series and we expect the monthly statistics to be better suited for climate studies. Remaining issues with time consistency of reanalysis products and associated wave hindcasts are further discussed.

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