The Atlantic basin shows a statistically significant increase in barrier layer thickness (BLT) and potential energy (BLPE) that is largely attributable to an average increase of 3 m in the post-TC isothermal layer depth (ITLD). The Eastern Pacific basin has no significant changes to any barrier layer characteristics, likely due to a shallow and highly stratified pycnocline. Finally, the Central Pacific has a statistically significant freshening in the upper 20-30 m that increases upper-ocean stratification. In addition, the Argo data is subdivided to investigate relationships with TC intensity, radial distance from center, translation speed, and time after TC passage.
Finally, a case study of Hurricane Gonzalo (2014) is presented. Observations from a Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences glider provides high frequency sampling of the upper-ocean in Gonzalo’s right quadrant. During the TC forced stage, surface salinity decreases by 0.1-0.2 psu. The near-surface stratification increases and is the same order of magnitude as the top of the pycnocline. BLT and BLPE increase as Hurricane Gonzalo approaches and peak several hours after passage. Barrier layer formation is likely a result of both ITLD deepening and near-surface freshening from precipitation.