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Spatial patterns of wind and sea surface temperature in the Galician upwelling region

AutorTorres, R. ; Barton, Eric D. ; Miller, P.; Fanjul, E.
Palabras claveSea winds
Coastal upwelling
Sea surface temperature
Air-sea coupling
Wind patterns
Fecha de publicación29-abr-2003
EditorAmerican Geophysical Union
CitaciónJournal of Geophysical Research - Part C - Oceans 108(C4): 3130 (2003)
ResumenCape Finisterre is the most northwest point in the Galician region and separates the meridional west and zonal north coasts of Galicia. The wind field there has high spatial and temporal variability throughout the year. No clear seasonal signal is evident; upwelling and nonupwelling patterns alternate in all seasons. Two outstanding features of the Galician region are persistent upwelling near Cape Finisterre even when not present farther south and alternation of strong upwelling on north and west coasts. Up to now, explanations have relied upon particular dynamics of oceanic flow past Finisterre. We find that major features of upwelling around Finisterre are related to strong spatial structure in the wind field. Analysis of QuikScat wind data for July 1999 to May 2001 shows strong repeatable patterns in the synoptic wind field. These wind patterns emerge as the combination of the two dominant modes in a complex empirical orthogonal function (CEOF) analysis representing over 85% of the variance. Summer wind patterns give rise to characteristic distributions of upwelling along the coast and favor development of filaments in particular locations. The wind measured at Finisterre itself, often used as a general indicator of upwelling conditions around the Galician coast, is not always representative of the overall wind field. The relevant wind fields allowed a qualitative explanation of temperature structure seen in sea surface temperature images, and of differences in both the upwelling and downwelling regimes between the two years.
Descripción14 pages, 14 figures.-- Full-text version available Open Access at: http://www.iim.csic.es/~barton/html/pdfs.html
Versión del editorhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2002JC001361
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