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Discussion papers | Copyright
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 11 Sep 2018

Research article | 11 Sep 2018

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Ocean Science (OS).

Genesis dynamics of the Angola-Benguela Frontal Zone

Shunya Koseki1, Hervé Giordani2, and Katerina Goubanova3,4 Shunya Koseki et al.
  • 1Geophysical Institute, University of Bergen, Bergen/Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, Norway
  • 2Centre National de Recherches Météologiques, MÉTÉO-France, Toulouse, France
  • 3Centro de Estudios Avanzados en Zonas Áridas, La Serena, Chile
  • 4CECI/ CERFACS-CNRS, Toulouse, France

Abstract. A diagnostic analysis of the climatological annual mean and seasonal cycle of the Angola Benguela Frontal Zone (ABFZ) is performed applying an ocean frontogenesis function (OFGF) to the ocean mixing layer (OML). The OFGF reveals that meridional confluence and the vertical tilting terms are the most dominant contributors to the frontogenesis of the ABFZ. The ABFZ shows a well-pronounced semi-annual cycle with two maximum (minimum) peaks in April–May and November–December (February–March and July–August). The development of the two maxima of frontogenesis is due to two different physical processes: enhanced tilting form March to April and the meridional confluence from September to October, respectively. The strong meridional confluence in September–October is closely related to the seasonal southward intrusion of tropical warm water to the ABFZ that seems to be associated with the development of the Angola Dome northwestern of the ABFZ. The strong tilting effect from March to April is attributed to the meridional gradient of vertical velocities whose effect is amplified in this period due to increasing stratification and shallow OML depth. The proposed OFGF can be viewed as a tool to diagnose the performance of CGCMs that generally fail in simulating realistically the position of the ABFZ, which leads to huge warm biases in the southeastern Atlantic.

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Shunya Koseki et al.
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Publications Copernicus
Short summary
With an ocean frontogenesis function, the dynamics of the Angola-Benguela Frontal Zone (AFBZ) is investigated. In annual-mean scale, the meridional confluece of Angola and Benguela currents and tilting effect due to the upwelling are main sources to generate the ABFZ. The annual cycle of the ABFZ is also driven mainly by these two effetcs.
With an ocean frontogenesis function, the dynamics of the Angola-Benguela Frontal Zone (AFBZ) is...