Zonal surface wind jets across the Red Sea due to mountain gap forcing along both sides of the Red Sea

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Jiang, Houshuo
Farrar, J. Thomas
Beardsley, Robert C.
Chen, Ru
Chen, Changsheng
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Red Sea
Coastal mountain gap wind jet
Wind forcing
Mesoscale atmospheric modeling over the Red Sea, validated by in-situ meteorological buoy data, identifies two types of coastal mountain gap wind jets that frequently blow across the longitudinal axis of the Red Sea: (1) an eastward-blowing summer daily wind jet originating from the Tokar Gap on the Sudanese Red Sea coast, and (2) wintertime westward-blowing wind-jet bands along the northwestern Saudi Arabian coast, which occur every 10–20 days and can last for several days when occurring. Both wind jets can attain wind speeds over 15 m s−1 and contribute significantly to monthly mean surface wind stress, especially in the cross-axis components, which could be of importance to ocean eddy formation in the Red Sea. The wintertime wind jets can cause significant evaporation and ocean heat loss along the northeastern Red Sea coast and may potentially drive deep convection in that region. An initial characterization of these wind jets is presented.
Author Posting. © American Geophysical Union, 2009. This article is posted here by permission of American Geophysical Union for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Geophysical Research Letters 36 (2009): L19605, doi:10.1029/2009GL040008.
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Geophysical Research Letters 36 (2009): L19605
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