Using Daily Ocean Wind Vector and Speed Measurements to Estimate the Diurnal Cycle Modes

Friday, 19 December 2014
Francis J Turk, Svetla M Hristova-Veleva and Ziad S Haddad, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA, United States
Over many oceanic regions, the surface wind varies widely throughout the day, owing to various meteorological forcings, such as land/sea temperature differences near coasts, or variations associated with tropical precipitation processes. Over the tropical oceans, several coarsely spaced buoy networks (TAO/TRITON in the Pacific, PIRATA in the Atlantic, RAMA in the Indian Ocean) are maintained as part of the Global Tropical Moored Buoy Array. For finer global scale analysis, further improvements to the modeling and understanding of physical processes within the coupled atmosphere ocean is based upon analysis of a disparate collection of low Earth orbiting (LEO) satellite based ocean surface wind data records. Since LEO satellite observations represent intermittently spaced, instantaneous snapshots, sampling against the backdrop of continuously changing physical processes, its is important to carefully merge and analyze the multiple satellite datasets in order to extract meaningful information on diurnal and semi-diurnal wind cycles. Early analysis of an investigation are described whereby multi-year collections of global sun-synchronous and asynchronous orbiting satellite ocean wind data are used to investigate the diurnal and semi-diurnal ocean wind vector variability over certain regions. A unique feature of the effort is the utilization of all capable sensors, including both wind speed and wind vector capable sensors, using overlapping asynchronous satellite observations to establish self-consistency, including inter-sensor bias correction to a common reference platform.