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The Railroad Switch Effect of Seasonally Reversing Currents on the Bay of Bengal High-Salinity Core

Sanchez-Franks, Ashok and Webber, B G M and King, B A and Vinayachandran, P N and Matthews, A J and Sheehan, P M F and Behara, A and Neema, C P (2019) The Railroad Switch Effect of Seasonally Reversing Currents on the Bay of Bengal High-Salinity Core. In: GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS, 46 (11). pp. 6005-6014.

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Official URL: https://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2019GL082208


The Southwest Monsoon Current (SMC) flows eastward from the Arabian Sea into the Bay of Bengal (BoB) during summer, advecting a core of high-salinity water. This high-salinity core has been linked with Arabian Sea High-Salinity Water that is presumed to enter the BoB directly from the Arabian Sea via the SMC. Here we show that the high-salinity core originates primarily from the western equatorial Indian Ocean, reaching the BoB via the Somali Current, the Equatorial Undercurrent, and the SMC. Years with anomalously saline high-salinity cores are linked with the East Africa Coastal Current and the Somali Current winter convergence and an anomalously strong Equatorial Undercurrent. Seasonal reversals that occur at the Somali Current and SMC junctions act as railroad switches diverting water masses to different basins in the northern Indian Ocean. Interannual fluctuations of the Equatorial Undercurrent are linked to wind stress and El Nino.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: copyright for this article belongs to AMER GEOPHYSICAL UNION
Department/Centre: Division of Mechanical Sciences > Centre for Atmospheric & Oceanic Sciences
Date Deposited: 29 Aug 2019 05:46
Last Modified: 29 Aug 2019 05:46
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/63468

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