Assessing the impact of downscaled winds on a regional ocean model simulation of the Humboldt system

Gildas Cambon 1 Katerina Goubanova 1 Patrick Marchesiello 1 Boris Dewitte 1 Séréna Illig 1 Vincent Echevin 2
1 ECOLA - Echanges Côte-Large
LEGOS - Laboratoire d'études en Géophysique et océanographie spatiales
2 PHYBIOCAR - Couplage physique-biogéochimie-carbone
LOCEAN - Laboratoire d'Océanographie et du Climat : Expérimentations et Approches Numériques
Abstract : Simulating the oceanic circulation in Eastern Boundary Upwelling Systems (EBUS) is a challenging issue due to the paucity of wind stress products of a sufficiently high spatial resolution to simulate the observed upwelling dynamics. In this study, we present the results of regional simulations of the Humboldt current system (Peru and Chile coasts) to assess the value of a statistical downscaling model of surface forcing. Twin experiments that differ only from the momentum flux forcing are carried out over the 1992-2000 period that encompasses the major 1997/98 El Niño/La Niña event. It is shown that the mean biases of the oceanic circulation can be drastically reduced simply substituting the mean wind field of NCEP reanalysis by a higher resolution mean product (QuikSCAT). The statistical downscaling model improves further the simulations allowing more realistic intraseasonal and interannual coastal undercurrent variability, which is notoriously strong off Central Peru and Central Chile. Despite some limitations, our results suggest that the statistical approach may be useful to regional oceanic studies of present and future climates.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, October 16, 2013 - 12:22:18 PM
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Gildas Cambon, Katerina Goubanova, Patrick Marchesiello, Boris Dewitte, Séréna Illig, et al.. Assessing the impact of downscaled winds on a regional ocean model simulation of the Humboldt system. Ocean Modelling, Elsevier, 2013, 65, pp.11-24. ⟨10.1016/J.OCEMOD.2013.01.007⟩. ⟨hal-00873728⟩



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