Baroclinic adjustment in Drake Passage driven by tropical Pacific forcing
Article first published online: 12 OCT 2012
©2012. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 39, Issue 19, 16 October 2012
How to Cite
2012), Baroclinic adjustment in Drake Passage driven by tropical Pacific forcing, Geophys. Res. Lett., 39, L19610, doi:10.1029/2012GL053402.and (
- Issue published online: 12 OCT 2012
- Article first published online: 12 OCT 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 5 SEP 2012
- Manuscript Revised: 4 SEP 2012
- Manuscript Received: 1 AUG 2012
- Drake Passage;
- baroclinic adjustment;
- boundary waves
 The time series of high-quality hydrographic measurements of the ACC in Drake Passage is revisited to investigate the extent of baroclinic adjustment in the region on time scales of up to two decades. We find that substantial adjustment of the upper kilometer of northern Drake Passage has occurred on interannual to decadal time scales, driven primarily by tropical Pacific forcing via the poleward propagation of boundary waves. The decadal-scale signal consists of a marked deepening of isopycnals (by ∼200 m between the early 1990s and the late 2000s), and reflects ENSO-forced wind-driven baroclinic changes over an extensive region of the eastern South Pacific.