Near-Surface Vertical Structure in Temperature and Salinity in the SPURS Study Area
[27-Feb-2014] Hodges, B.A. and Fratantoni, D.M.
Presented at the 2014 Ocean Sciences Meeting
Vertical variability in temperature and salinity in the upper few meters of the ocean is examined using year-long datasets from three Wave Glider autonomous surface vehicles and short missions under low-wind conditions by Iver 2 EcoMapper autonomous underwater vehicles. Each Wave Glider carried SeaBird GPCTDs at depths of 25 cm and 6.5 m. In addition, one Wave Glider was outfitted with 12 temperature loggers at intermediate depths for the latter half of the deployment. The measurements were made in the SPURS study area near 25°N, 38°W, approximately at the center of the North Atlantic surface salinity maximum. Diurnal and seasonal variability of near-surface vertical gradients in T and S is characterized in relation to wind speed and insolation. Extreme cases of temperature stratification are documented, reaching 3.5°C in the upper meter, and nearly 5°C in the upper 6.5 m.