Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 32 Issue 02

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Volume 32, No. 2
Pages 150 - 161

Air-Sea-Land Forcing in the Gulf of Tonkin: Assessing Seasonal Variability Using Modern Tools

Peter Rogowski Javier Zavala-GarayKipp ShearmanEric TerrillJohn WilkinTran Hong Lam
Article Abstract

A US–Vietnamese collaborative program established in 2014 provides a framework for partnership with foreign governments. A primary objective of the program is to enhance the Vietnamese collaborators’ skills through training and education and to increase the capacity of their local institutions to conduct research and collect observations that benefit Vietnam. Here, we the synthesize the first results from this program, including development of a high-resolution numerical model and implementation of satellite imagery, high-frequency radar-based surface current measurements, repeat (monthly) coastal hydrography, and drifter and wave observations. We assess seasonal circulation trends along the western Gulf of Tonkin, specifically focusing on the seasonality of a unique Red River water mass that was largely ignored by earlier studies. The development and downcoast advection of the seasonal coastal current was found to be a key dynamical feature of the western region of the gulf. Additionally, observational data sets suggest episodic forcing from storm events is important to the higher frequency dynamics in the region. Collection and subsequent analysis of extensive data sets by this US–Vietnamese partnership confirm the importance of riverine input to Gulf of Tonkin dynamics and address a known scientific gap in previous studies of the region.

Citation

Rogowski, P., J. Zavala-Garay, K. Shearman, E. Terrill, J. Wilkin, and T.H. Lam. 2019. Air-sea-land forcing in the Gulf of Tonkin: Assessing seasonal variability using modern tools. Oceanography 32(2):150–161, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2019.223.

Supplementary Materials
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