Effect of mesoscale eddies on the Taiwan Strait current

Yu Lin Chang*, Yasumasa Miyazawa, Xinyu Guo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


This study shows that mesoscale eddies can alter the Taiwan Strait Current. The 20-yr data-assimilated Japan Coastal Ocean Predictability Experiment 2 (JCOPE2) reanalysis data are analyzed, and the results are confirmed with idealized experiments. The leading wind-forced seasonal cycle is excluded to focus on the effect of the eddy. The warm eddy southwest of Taiwan is shown to generate a northward flow, whereas the cold eddy produces a southward current. The effect of the eddy penetrates onto the shelf through the joint effect of baroclinicity and relief (JEBAR). The cross-isobath fluxes lead to shelfward convergence and divergence, setting up the modulation of the sea level slope. The resulting along-strait current anomaly eventually affects a wide area of the Taiwan Strait. The stronger eddy leads to larger modification of the cross-shelf flows and sea level slope, producing a greater transport anomaly. The composite Sea-Viewing Wide Field-of-View Sensor chlorophyll-a (Chl-a) serves as an indicator to show the change in Chl-a concentration in the strait in response to the eddy-induced current. During the warm eddy period, the current carries the southern water of lower concentration northward, reducing Chl-a concentration in the strait. In contrast, Chl-a is enhanced because the cold eddy-induced southward current carries the northern water of higher concentration southward into the strait.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1651-1666
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Physical Oceanography
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Circulation/ Dynamics
  • Currents
  • Eddies
  • Mesoscale processes
  • Ocean dynamics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography


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