Influence of the Atmospheric Forcing on the Circulation in the Gulf of Mexico

Efrain Moreles, Institute of Marine Sciences and Limnology, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Coyoacan, DF, Mexico, Erick Raul Olvera-Prado, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Atmospheric Science Center, Coyoacan, DF, Mexico and Jorge Zavala-Hidalgo, Centro de Ciencias de la Atmosfera, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Grupo de Interacción Océano-Atmósfera, Mexico City, DF, Mexico
This work studies the behavior of the Loop Current System (LCS) and the ocean currents in the Gulf of Mexico (GoM), as determined by atmospheric forcing (air-sea momentum flux), using the numerical model HYCOM. To achieve this aim, the study considered long-term simulations (57 years) of the circulation in the GoM for two cases: one with atmospheric forcing (wAF) and another without atmospheric forcing (woAF). The parameters used for the analysis are the metrics of the LCS (penetration, length, area, and circulation of the Loop Current; shedding period, diameter, and trajectories of the LCEs; and velocity of propagation of the ocean eddy variability) and the rotary spectra of ocean currents at different locations and depths. The differences in the circulation in the GoM under the wAF and woAF conditions were investigated, providing further insights to the effects of the atmospheric forcing on the circulation in the GoM.