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Annales Geophysicae An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 25, issue 2
Ann. Geophys., 25, 331-340, 2007
https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-25-331-2007
© Author(s) 2007. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Ann. Geophys., 25, 331-340, 2007
https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-25-331-2007
© Author(s) 2007. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

  08 Mar 2007

08 Mar 2007

Remote sensing observations of the coherent and non-coherent ring structures in the vicinity of Lesser Antilles

R. C. Cruz Gómez1 and S. N. Bulgakov2 R. C. Cruz Gómez and S. N. Bulgakov
  • 1Posgrado de Ciencias del Mar y Limnologia, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Mexico
  • 2Institute of Astronomy and Meteorology, Guadalajara University, Mexico

Abstract. The North Brazil Current Rings (NBCR) penetration into the Caribbean Sea is being investigated by employing a merged altimeter-derived sea height anomaly (TOPEX/Poseidon, Jason-1 and ERS-1, 2), the ocean surface color data (SeaWiFS) and Global Drifter Program information. Four strategies are being applied to process the data: (1) calculations of the Okubo-Weiss parameter for NBCR identification, (2) longitude-time plots (also known as Hovmöller diagrams), (3) two-dimensional Radon transforms and (4) two-dimensional Fourier transforms.

A twofold NBCR structure has been detected in the region under investigation. The results have shown that NBC rings mainly propagate into the Caribbean Sea along two principal pathways (near 12° N and 17° N) in the ring translation corridor. Thus, rings following the southern pathway in the fall-winter period can enter through very shallow southern straits as non-coherent structures. A different behavior is observed near the northern pathway (~17° N), where NBC rings are thought to have a coherent structure during their squeezing into the eastern Caribbean, i.e. conserving the principal characteristics of the incident rings. We attribute this difference in the rings' behavior to the vertical scales of the rings and to the bottom topography features in the vicinity of the Lesser Antilles.

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