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List of projects

  • Analysis of OFES models:
    • A 1/10th of a degree model with a biological component is already available (see Sasai et al. 2007, GRL on the study of OFES on the eastern tropical Pacific). A 1/30th of a degree model with or without a biological component is being made available (by the end of the year –see 06/10/09’s email from Hide Sasaki).
    • We could study the changes in dynamics (meso and submeso scales processes) and in biological activity due to the increase in model resolution. This analysis would parallel that performed by Lévy et al. (2001) on the North Atlantic but we would instead focus on the subtropical and tropical latitudes of the Pacific ocean.
    • The study could also be parallel to a similar study of regional models around Hawaii: either Paolo’s ROMS model, Yanli’s HYCOM model or Brian’s (non-assimilating) model. Does any of these model implement or can easily implement a biological component?
    • All these models should also be compared to observed surface chlorophyll a (SCa), sea-surface-height (SSH) deduced FSLE (and/or FTLE) and SGQ-derived vertical velocity when possible.
  • The analysis of OFES models is actually a part of Zhang’s NASA proposal. A further component of that proposal is more oriented toward observations. Using surface quasi-geostrophy (SQG) theory and high-resolution SSH and sea surface temperature (SST), we would deduce the vertical velocity field and compare it to SCa and FSLE (and/or FTLE). In the meantime, it will be a first test on using SQG theory for the tropics. Although this proposal is focusing on the tropics, especially the Tropical Instability Waves (TIWs) but it could very be extended to the subtropical region around Hawaii.
  • NSF’s proposal with S. Brown and B. Bidigare: Our role would be to compute FSLE (and/or FTLE) as a predictor to submesocale processes and planton blooms.
  • Kai et al. (2009) used statistical techniques to analyze FSLE in correlation with sea birds. We could use these statistical techniques or modified ones to quantify the relation between FSLE (from models with biological component and or observations) with primary production. On this subject, there is also several complication to take into account: the reason why a structure revealed by FSLE does not correspond to a bloom in primary production are 1) FSLE wrongly suggests an unstable/stable manifold, 2) the instability is not deep enough so that nutrients from below the nutricline are not being upwelled, 3) the instability has either just started and the bloom did not have time to mature or 4) all upwelled nutrients have been used and the bloom has died.
  • Kai et al. (2009) gives also the idea of trying to compare unstable/stable manifolds deduced by FLSE to NOAA’s extensive (?) dataset on marine animals (tuna, whales, etc). Ask Mélanie Abecassis who works with Dr. Jeffrey Polovina.
  • Process study: The effect of surface mixed layer on frontogenesis and upwelling of nutrients.
  • To gain confidence in FSLE techniques and meaning: Ask Francisco and re-read Joseph and Legras about: 1) difference in FSLE when using full or geostrophic velocity, 2) effect of grid resolution on calculation of FSLE.