Sea surface height observations of the 34N 'waveguide' in the North Atlantic.

Cromwell, D.. 2001 Sea surface height observations of the 34N 'waveguide' in the North Atlantic. Geophysical Research Letters, 28 (19). 3705-3708.

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We present a study of the energetic zonal band at 34oN in the North Atlantic using a wavelet analysis of more than 8 years of TOPEX/POSEIDON altimeter data. It is already well-established in the literature that this zonal ‘waveguide’ is dominated by large-scale propagating features. The wavelet analysis yields sea surface height variance at a range of periods and wavelengths, allowing us to observe and quantify evolution of the features in space and time. Signal variance west of the mid-Atlantic ridge at 34oN is larger than to the east of the ridge: by a factor of ~2 in the period band 0.5-0.9 years, in which baroclinic Rossby waves and eddies propagate. The period of the peak energy is reduced crossing the ridge from ~1 year to ~7-9 months, before rising again to the annual cycle on the other side. There is also evidence of energy peaks at periods of ~2-4 years in the Gulf Stream region and east of the ridge.

Item Type: Publication - Article
ISSN: 0094-8276
Date made live: 31 Oct 2003 +0 (UTC)

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