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Drivers, dynamics, and persistence of the 2017/2018 Tasman Sea marine heatwave


Kajtar, JB and Bachman, SD and Holbrook, NJ and Pilo, GS, Drivers, dynamics, and persistence of the 2017/2018 Tasman Sea marine heatwave, JGR Oceans, 127, (8) Article e2022JC018931. ISSN 2169-9275 (2022) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright Statement

2022. The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) License, ( which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.

DOI: doi:10.1029/2022JC018931


During the austral summer of 2017/2018, the Tasman Sea experienced an intense marine heatwave over an extensive area. It persisted for approximately 3 months and caused substantial ecological impacts. The marine heatwave was understood to have been driven primarily by increased net downward heat flux associated with a high pressure system. However, it has been unclear why the marine heatwave persisted. Using an ultra-high-resolution (∼1 km) regional ocean model simulation, the drivers, dynamics, and persistence of the 2017/2018 marine heatwave are explored in detail. It is found that a burst of warm water advection helped to initiate the event, but a shallower than usual mixed layer, coupled with near continuous net downward air-sea heat flux, caused the marine heatwave to persist. Submesoscale dynamics were found to be relatively unimportant to the marine heatwave's persistence.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:marine heatwave, Tasman Sea, ocean model, MITgcm, submesoscale
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 change models
UTAS Author:Kajtar, JB (Dr Jules Kajtar)
UTAS Author:Holbrook, NJ (Professor Neil Holbrook)
UTAS Author:Pilo, GS (Miss Gabriela Semolini Pilo)
ID Code:152191
Year Published:2022
Deposited By:Oceans and Cryosphere
Deposited On:2022-08-12
Last Modified:2022-11-21
Downloads:5 View Download Statistics

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