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Progress in understanding of Indian Ocean circulation, variability, air-sea exchange and impacts on biogeochemistry


Phillips, HE and Tandon, A and Furue, R and Hood, R and Ummenhofer, CC and Benthuysen, JA and Menezes, V and Hu, S and Webber, B and Sanchez-Franks, A and Cherian, D and Schroyer, E and Feng, M and Wijesekera, H and Chatterjee, A and Yu, L and Hermes, J and Murtugudde, R and Tozuka, T and Su, D and Singh, A and Centurioni, L and Prakash, S and Wiggert, J, Progress in understanding of Indian Ocean circulation, variability, air-sea exchange and impacts on biogeochemistry, Ocean Science, 17, (6) pp. 1677-1751. ISSN 1812-0784 (2021) [Refereed Article]

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Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) License.(

DOI: doi:10.5194/os-2021-1


Over the past decade, our understanding of the Indian Ocean has advanced through concerted efforts toward measuring the ocean circulation and its water properties, detecting changes in water masses, and linking physical processes to ecologically important variables. New circulation pathways and mechanisms have been discovered, which control atmospheric and oceanic mean state and variability. This review brings together new understanding of the ocean-atmosphere system in the Indian Ocean since the last comprehensive review, describing the Indian Ocean circulation patterns, air-sea interactions and climate variability. The second International Indian Ocean Expedition (IIOE-2) and related efforts have motivated the application of new technologies to deliver higher-resolution observations and models of Indian Ocean processes. As a result we are discovering the importance of small scale processes in setting the large-scale gradients and circulation, interactions between physical and biogeochemical processes, interactions between boundary currents and the interior, and between the surface and the deep ocean. In the last decade we have seen rapid warming of the Indian Ocean overlaid with extremes in the form of marine heatwaves. These events have motivated studies that have delivered new insight into the variability in ocean heat content and exchanges in the Indian Ocean, and climate variability on interannual to decadal timescales. This synthesis paper reviews the advances in these areas in the last decade.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Indian Ocean, currents, monsoon, air-sea interaction, biogeochemistry, physical oceanography
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Oceanography
Research Field:Physical oceanography
Objective Division:Environmental Policy, Climate Change and Natural Hazards
Objective Group:Understanding climate change
Objective Field:Climate variability (excl. social impacts)
UTAS Author:Phillips, HE (Associate Professor Helen Phillips)
ID Code:146781
Year Published:2021
Web of Science® Times Cited:11
Deposited By:Oceans and Cryosphere
Deposited On:2021-09-27
Last Modified:2022-08-24
Downloads:11 View Download Statistics

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