87th AMS Annual Meeting

Saturday, 13 January 2007
Characteristics of Sea Surface Temperatures (SSTs) between 23ºC and 24ºC West of the Galápagos Islands
Douglas J. Gavin, Jackson State University, 39217, Jackson, MS; and L. M. Hartten, N. Gordon, R. Markel, and K. Diaz
Previous research showed that low-level wind flow over the Galápagos Islands was decoupled from higher level winds during some of the time periods used. By looking at wind profiler data researchers noticed that the decoupling of the winds occurred when sea surface temperatures (SSTs) were cooler than 23ºC, while during the coupled wind flow cases, SSTs were warmer than 24ºC. This research focused on six TAO buoys, which provided SSTs collected from January 1994 to September 2003. The TAO buoys were used to look at characteristics of SSTs west of the Galápagos Islands that were in the range of 23ºC to 24ºC. The total count of SSTs between 23ºC and 24ºC depended on three conditions. The first condition was whether it was observed during the cold season, warm season or in between. The second condition that affected the range SSTs was whether it was during El Niño, La Niña, or normal periods. Finally, the location of the TAO buoys affected whether the SSTs values were in the range of 23°C to 24°C. SSTs between 23ºC and 24ºC were less frequent at the 2ºN buoys, during strong El Niño periods, and in the middle of cold and warm seasons.

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