Oceanic thermal and biological responses to Santa Ana winds



[1] Ocean surface wind vectors with improved spatial resolutions were derived from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA's) Quick Scatterometer (QuikSCAT) satellite. They allow us to examine the details and extent of oceanic influence of a Santa Ana event - a strong offshore and downslope wind in southern California that may spread wide fires, damage properties, and endanger aviation. The oceanic thermal and biological responses to the surface wind jets were observed with other spaceborne sensors. It is found that surface wind jets reduce sea surface temperatures and increase biological productivities. Spacebased measurements demonstrate the inadequacy of current operational numerical weather prediction (NWP) models to accurately and consistently predict the characteristics of Santa Ana winds over the coastal ocean.