Interannual variability of the South Indian Countercurrent
Menezes, Viviane V.
Phillips, Helen E.
Vianna, Marcio L.
Bindoff, Nathaniel L.
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In the present work, we investigate the interannual variability of the South Indian Countercurrent (SICC), a major and still understudied current of the Indian Ocean circulation. To characterize the interannual variability of the SICC, four different data sets (altimetry, GLORYS, OFAM3, and SODA) are analyzed using multiple tools, which include Singular Spectrum Analysis and wavelet methods. The quasi-biennial band dominates the SICC low-frequency variance, with the main peak in the 1.5–1.8 year interval. A secondary peak (2.1–2.5 year) is only found in the western basin. Interannual and decadal-type modulations of the quasi-biennial signal are also identified. In addition, limitations of SODA before the 1960s in the SICC region are revealed. Within the quasi-biennial band, the SICC system presents two main patterns with a multiple jet structure. One pattern is characterized by a robust northern jet, while in the other the central jet is well developed and northern jet is weaker. In both patterns, the southern jet has always a strong signature. When the northern SICC jet is stronger, the northern cell of the subtropical gyre has a triangular shape, with its southern limb having a strong equatorward slant. The quasi-biennial variability of the SICC is probably related to the Indian Ocean tropical climate modes that are known to have a strong biennial characteristic.
Author Posting. © American Geophysical Union, 2016. This article is posted here by permission of American Geophysical Union for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 121 (2016): 3465–3487, doi:10.1002/2015JC011417.
Suggested CitationJournal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 121 (2016): 3465–3487
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