Drucker Robert S.

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Robert S.

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  • Article
    Satellite and in situ salinity : understanding near-surface stratification and subfootprint variability
    (American Meteorological Society, 2016-08-31) Boutin, Jacqueline ; Chao, Yi ; Asher, William E. ; Delcroix, Thierry ; Drucker, Robert S. ; Drushka, Kyla ; Kolodziejczyk, Nicolas ; Lee, Tong ; Reul, Nicolas ; Reverdin, Gilles ; Schanze, Julian J. ; Soloviev, Alexander ; Yu, Lisan ; Anderson, Jessica ; Brucker, Ludovic ; Dinnat, Emmanuel ; Santos-Garcia, Andrea ; Jones, W. Linwood ; Maes, Christophe ; Meissner, Thomas ; Tang, Wenqing ; Vinogradova, Nadya ; Ward, Brian
    Remote sensing of salinity using satellite-mounted microwave radiometers provides new perspectives for studying ocean dynamics and the global hydrological cycle. Calibration and validation of these measurements is challenging because satellite and in situ methods measure salinity differently. Microwave radiometers measure the salinity in the top few centimeters of the ocean, whereas most in situ observations are reported below a depth of a few meters. Additionally, satellites measure salinity as a spatial average over an area of about 100 × 100 km2. In contrast, in situ sensors provide pointwise measurements at the location of the sensor. Thus, the presence of vertical gradients in, and horizontal variability of, sea surface salinity complicates comparison of satellite and in situ measurements. This paper synthesizes present knowledge of the magnitude and the processes that contribute to the formation and evolution of vertical and horizontal variability in near-surface salinity. Rainfall, freshwater plumes, and evaporation can generate vertical gradients of salinity, and in some cases these gradients can be large enough to affect validation of satellite measurements. Similarly, mesoscale to submesoscale processes can lead to horizontal variability that can also affect comparisons of satellite data to in situ data. Comparisons between satellite and in situ salinity measurements must take into account both vertical stratification and horizontal variability.
  • Article
    Supercooled Southern Ocean waters
    (American Geophysical Union, 2020-10-09) Haumann, F. Alexander ; Moorman, Ruth ; Riser, Stephen C. ; Smedsrud, Lars H. ; Maksym, Ted ; Wong, Annie P. S. ; Wilson, Earle A. ; Drucker, Robert S. ; Talley, Lynne D. ; Johnson, Kenneth S. ; Key, Robert M. ; Sarmiento, Jorge L.
    In cold polar waters, temperatures sometimes drop below the freezing point, a process referred to as supercooling. However, observational challenges in polar regions limit our understanding of the spatial and temporal extent of this phenomenon. We here provide observational evidence that supercooled waters are much more widespread in the seasonally ice‐covered Southern Ocean than previously reported. In 5.8% of all analyzed hydrographic profiles south of 55°S, we find temperatures below the surface freezing point (“potential” supercooling), and half of these have temperatures below the local freezing point (“in situ” supercooling). Their occurrence doubles when neglecting measurement uncertainties. We attribute deep coastal‐ocean supercooling to melting of Antarctic ice shelves and surface‐induced supercooling in the seasonal sea‐ice region to wintertime sea‐ice formation. The latter supercooling type can extend down to the permanent pycnocline due to convective sinking plumes—an important mechanism for vertical tracer transport and water‐mass structure in the polar ocean.