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143187 - Drivers of marine heatwaves in the East China Sea and the South Yellow Sea.pdf (17.31 MB)

Drivers of marine heatwaves in the East China Sea and the South Yellow Sea in three consecutive summers during 2016-2018

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-20, 21:39 authored by Gao, G, Marin, M, Feng, M, Yin, B, Yang, D, Feng, X, Ding, Y, Song, D
In 3 consecutive years from 2016 to 2018, extreme ocean warming events, or marine heatwaves (MHWs), occurred during boreal summers in the East China Sea (ECS) and South Yellow Sea (SYS), which is unprecedented in the past four decades based on the satellite record. In this study, we used a high‐resolution hydrodynamic model based on Finite Volume Community Ocean Model (FVCOM) to simulate the evolution of these warming events. An upper ocean temperature budget (0–20 m) analysis based on the model results shows that the shortwave radiation and the ocean advection anomalies jointly contributed to the anomalous warming in the three successive summers (June–August) in the SYS and the north part of the ECS. In addition, the reduction of surface wind speeds during the 2016 and 2017 summers further weakened the vertical mixing, thereby enhancing the anomalous warming in the north part of the ECS adjacent to the SYS. During the three summers, the increases of shortwave radiation were closely related to the East Asian Summer Monsoon (EASM) variability, which reduced the cloud cover in the ECS and SYS, whereas the advection anomalies were mostly associated with regional wind anomalies. In summer 2018, upper ocean heat was transported into the central trough of the SYS, accumulated in an anticyclonic eddy generated by the anomalous wind stress curls. Therefore, despite the primary driver of the MHWs is the EASM variation, regional processes are critical to driving the spatial pattern of the MHW intensity in the ECS and SYS.


Publication title

Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans





Article number









Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies


Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Inc.

Place of publication

United States

Rights statement

© 2020. American Geophysical Union

Repository Status

  • Open

Socio-economic Objectives

Effects of climate change on the South Pacific (excl. Australia and New Zealand) (excl. social impacts)

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