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Seasonal meandering of the polar front upstream of the Kerguelen Plateau


Pauthenet, E and Roquet, F and Madec, G and Guinet, C and Hindell, M and McMahon, CR and Harcourt, R and Nerini, D, Seasonal meandering of the polar front upstream of the Kerguelen Plateau, Geophysical Research Letters, 45, (18) pp. 9774-9781. ISSN 0094-8276 (2018) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2018 The Authors. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

DOI: doi:10.1029/2018GL079614


The location of the Antarctic Polar Front (PF) is mapped in the Southern Indian Ocean by decomposing the shape of temperature and salinity profiles into vertical modes using a functional Principal Component Analysis. We define the PF as the northernmost minimum of temperature at the subsurface and represent it as a linear combination of the first three modes. This method is applied on an ocean reanalysis data set and on in situ observations, revealing a seasonal variability of the PF latitudinal position that is most pronounced between the Conrad Rise and the Kerguelen Plateau. This shift coincides with variations in the transport across the Northern Kerguelen Plateau. We suggest that seasonal changes of the upper stratification may drive the observed variability of the PF, with potentially large implications for the pathways and residence time of water masses over the plateau and the phytoplankton bloom extending southeast of the Kerguelen Islands.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Southern Ocean, ecosystems, tracking, Antarctic Polar Front, Kerguelen Plateau, Southern Indian Ocean, Southern Ocean fronts, functional principal component analysis
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Marine systems and management
Objective Field:Marine biodiversity
UTAS Author:Hindell, M (Professor Mark Hindell)
UTAS Author:McMahon, CR (Dr Clive McMahon)
ID Code:130087
Year Published:2018
Funding Support:Australian Research Council (DP180101667)
Web of Science® Times Cited:24
Deposited By:Ecology and Biodiversity
Deposited On:2019-01-09
Last Modified:2019-03-13
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