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Climate Variability & Change, Water & Energy Cycles

We aim to improve the mixed layer heat budget in ECCO2 (Estimating the Circulation and Climate of the Ocean, Phase II) solutions using GHRSST (Group for High-Resolution Sea Surface Temperature) data products. Specifically, we will (i) analyze the mixed layer heat budget in a 1992-2007 solution on daily to interannual time scales and on kilometer to basin-wide spatial scales, (ii) analyze the mixed layer heat budget in model sensitivity experiments, (iii) compare ECCO2 with GHRSST data products, (iv) compare ECCO2 with OAFlux (Objective Analysis Flux) and CORE (Common Ocean-Ice Reference Experiments) surface fluxes, (v) use a covariance matching approach to estimate model and data errors in the mixed layer heat budget, and (vi) use a Green's function approach to calibrate empirical model parameters for surface fluxes and vertical mixing. Preliminary comparisons of GHRSST and ECCO2 show the presence of distinctive large scale (>1000 km), broadband (periods of days to months) fluctuations of SST. In ECCO2, these fluctuations are primarily driven by atmospheric fluxes and the amplitude of these fluctuations depends on the simulated mixed layer depth. We hypothesize that in certain regions and for specific frequency-wavenumber bands, it will be possible to estimate mixed layer depth based primarily on the time rate of change of SST. The mixed layer heat budget error analysis, which we aim to carry out, will establish whether and where this hypothesis holds. This proposal pertains to the second research theme of the Physical Oceanography solicitation: "Understanding and estimation of sea-surface temperature". The key expected contributions are a better representation of mixed layer processes in global climate models and science user feedback to GHRSST towards improved SST data products.

Project PI: Dimitris Menemenlis/Jet Propulsion Lab, California Institute of Technology

Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology Mail Stop 300-323, 4800 Oak Grove Dr, Pasadena CA 91109, U.S.A.

Phone: 818–354–1656

Fax: 818–393–6720

Email: menemenlis@jpl.nasa.gov

http://science.jpl.nasa.gov/people/Menemenlis/2008Menemenlis.pdf

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Started: Aug 10, 2010

Last Activity: Dec 16, 2010

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