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The relationships between tropical Atlantic sea level variability and major climate indices

Andrew, Jennifer A.M.; Leach, Harry; Woodworth, Philip L.. 2006 The relationships between tropical Atlantic sea level variability and major climate indices. Ocean Dynamics, 56 (5-6). 452-463. 10.1007/s10236-006-0068-z

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Abstract/Summary

Relationships were examined between variability in tropical Atlantic sea level and major climate indices with the use of TOPEX/POSEIDON altimeter and island tide gauge data with the aim of learning more about the external influences on the variability of the tropical Atlantic ocean. Possible important connections were found between indices related to the El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and the sea levels in all three tropical regions (north, equatorial, and south), although the existence of only one major ENSO event within the decade of available altimetry means that a more complete investigation of the ENSO-dependence of Atlantic sea level changes has to await for the compilation of longer data sets. An additional link was found with the Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) in the equatorial region, this perhaps surprising observation is probably an artifact of the similarity between IOD and ENSO time series in the 1990s. No evidence was obtained for significant correlations between tropical Atlantic sea level and North Atlantic Oscillation or Antarctic Oscillation Index. The most intriguing relationship observed was between the Quasi-Biennial Oscillation and sea level in a band centered approximately on 10°S. A plausible explanation for the relationship is lacking, but possibilities for further research are suggested.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1007/s10236-006-0068-z
Programmes: POL Programmes
ISSN: 1616-7341
Additional Keywords: Tropical Atlantic sea levels, Tropical Atlantic climate connections, Atlantic-ENSO connections, Atlantic biennial variability
NORA Subject Terms: Marine Sciences
Date made live: 17 Aug 2012 13:01
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/19299

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