Tropical pathways, equatorial undercurrent variability and the 1998 La Niña

  • Izumo T
  • Picaut J
  • Blanke B
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Abstract

In the equatorial Pacific Ocean, the rapid transition from the 1997 El Niño to the 1998 La Niña was associated with an outcrop of cold water appearing at the surface around (0°, 125°W) end of May 1998. In a validated ocean general circulation model, the cold water of the outcrop appears to come from two pathways (one in each hemisphere) that connect the subtropics to the equatorial upwelling region through the western boundary currents and the Equatorial Undercurrent (EUC). The EUC and subtropics may have an influence on the rapid turn into La Niña in 1998. Large variations in transport (up to 60 × 10

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Authors

  • Takeshi Izumo

  • Joel Picaut

  • Bruno Blanke

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