Surface Thermal Structure and Variability of Upwelling Shadows in the Gulf of Arauco, Chile

Wong, Zeneida; Saldias, Gonzalo S.; Largier, John L.; Strub, P. Ted; Sobarzo, Marcus


The upwelling shadow in the Gulf of Arauco (GA) is studied using 15 years of daily satellite images of Sea Surface Temperature (SST) from Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES), as well as heat flux and wind data from the ERA5 reanalysis product. An Upwelling Shadow Index (USI) is developed based on the SST differences between the GA and the region off Punta Lavapie (PL) farther offshore, characterized by active upwelling. USI values greater than 0.91 degrees C and SST differences less than 1.1 degrees C, correspond to an upwelling shadow event. These cases occurred 10.29% of the time and were more frequent in spring/summer during events of upwelling-favorable winds with strong cyclonic wind stress curl, interspersed with wind relaxations. Multiple correlations between USI and wind stress curl and solar radiation showed an r(2) = 40%-80% for some summer months. Most events persisted for only 1 day (53%), whereas 34% of upwelling shadow events lasted between 2 and 4 days and 9% of events were longer than 4 days. Water residence times as long as 15 days were observed in the GA during upwelling shadow events. During southerly wind relaxation (less than 2 days), cold surface waters flowing north from PL curved onshore and entered the GA from the north, weakening the thermal gradient between PL and GA and the upwelling shadow. Long periods of wind relaxation (at least 1 week) resulted in the dissipation of the thermal gradient due to the warming of offshore waters.

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Título según WOS: Surface Thermal Structure and Variability of Upwelling Shadows in the Gulf of Arauco, Chile
Volumen: 126
Número: 4
Fecha de publicación: 2021


Notas: ISI