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Eddies connect the tropical Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico
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  • Minghai Huang,
  • Xinfeng Liang,
  • Yingli Zhu,
  • Yonggang Liu,
  • Robert Weisberg
Minghai Huang
University of Delaware
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Xinfeng Liang
University of Delaware

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Yingli Zhu
University of Delaware
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Yonggang Liu
University of South Florida
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Robert Weisberg
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Numerical circulation modeling and observational studies have been conducted to understand the Loop Current (LC) system behaviors in the Gulf of Mexico (GoM). One of the factors that may influence the LC are upstream eddies from within the Caribbean Sea. By combining satellite altimetry, sea surface salinity and ocean color data, we demonstrate that mesoscale eddies from the western tropical Atlantic Ocean can eventually make their way to the Gulf of Mexico and affect the LC. In addition, our study shows that freshwater of Amazon and Orinoco River origin trapped within mesoscale eddies can also enter the GoM affecting the GoM stratification. This study provides insights into understanding variations of the LC system and showcases the roles of mesoscale eddies in connecting the open ocean and regional seas.
28 Feb 2021Published in Geophysical Research Letters volume 48 issue 4. 10.1029/2020GL091277