Thermal frontal zone along the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia

Poh Heng Kok, Mohd F. Akhir, Fredolin Tangang @ Tajudin Mahmud

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Monthly satellite-derived sea surface temperature (SST) climatology was used to investigate the thermal frontal zone along the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia (ECPM) during both northeast and southwest monsoons. In addition, in situ hydrographic observations were conducted to investigate the vertical structure of thermohaline fronts during the southwest monsoon and inter-monsoon period. During the northeast monsoon, the locations of the front is determined by the speed of the southward flowing western boundary current, located near South Vietnam, which causes the tongue of cooler water, flooding into the ECPM. As the speed of southward flowing western boundary current increases, the cooler water tongue moves closer to the ECPM. On the other hand, as current speed decreases, the distinctive cooler water tongue recedes from the ECPM. During the southwest monsoon, the presence of a cooler water patch is observed in the SST climatology data and limited field data exhibit upwelling features (i.e. the presence of isotherm and isohaline shoaling towards the coast and surface). Analysis of European Centre for Medium-range Forecast (ECMWF) wind data show the presence of positive wind stress curl in the region, indicating a driving mechanism for upwelling. Additionally, analyses of onshore and offshore SST differences suggest that significant atmospheric forcing during different monsoon periods are responsible for the seasonal evolution of SST patterns.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalContinental Shelf Research
Volume110
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2015

Fingerprint

Malaysia
monsoon
coolers
surface temperature
heat
coasts
tongue
coast
sea surface temperature
western boundary current
water
climatology
upwelling
Vietnam
atmospheric forcing
wind stress
isotherm
flooding
speed

Keywords

  • Advection
  • East coast of Peninsular Malaysia
  • Front
  • Monsoon
  • Upwelling
  • Wind stress curl

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science
  • Geology
  • Oceanography

Cite this

Thermal frontal zone along the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia. / Kok, Poh Heng; Akhir, Mohd F.; Tangang @ Tajudin Mahmud, Fredolin.

In: Continental Shelf Research, Vol. 110, 01.11.2015, p. 1-15.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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