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Seasonal and Interannual Variability of the North Korean Cold Current in the East Sea Reanalysis Data

동해 재분석 자료에 나타난 북한한류의 계절 및 경년변동성

  • Published : 2008.03.30

Abstract

Analyzing the results of East Sea Regional Ocean Model using a 3-dimensional variational data assimilation scheme, we investigated spatial and temporal variability of the North Korean Cold Current (NKCC) in the East Sea. The climatological monthly mean transport of the NKCC clearly shows seasonal variation of the NKCC within the range of about 0.35 Sv ($=0^6m^3/s$), which increases from its minimum (about 0.45 Sv) through December-January to March, decreases during March and May, and then increases again to the maximum (about 0.8 Sv) in August-September. The volume transport of the NKCC shows interannual variation of the NKCC with the range of about 1.0 Sv that is larger than seasonal variation. The southward current of the NKCC appears often not only in summer but in winter as well. The width of the NKCC is about 35 km near the Korean coast and its core is located under the East Korea Warm Current. The North Korean Cold Water (NKCW), characterized by low salinity and low temperature, is located both under the Tsushima Warm Water and in the western side of the maximum southward current of the NKCC that means the NKCC advects the NKCW southward along the Korean coast. It is revealed that the intermediate low salinity water, formed off the Vladivostok in winter, flows southward to the south of $37^{\circ}N$ through $2{\sim}3$ paths; one path along the Korean coast, another one along $132^{\circ}E$, and the middle path along $130^{\circ}E$. The path of the intermediate low salinity varies with years. The reanalysis fields suggest that the NKCW is advected through the paths along the Korean coast and along $130^{\circ}E$.

Keywords

East Sea;North Korean Cold Current;seasonal variation;inter-annual variation;East Sea Regional Ocean Model

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