|Title||Cloud response to the meandering Kuroshio extension front|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2013|
|Authors||Tomita H., Xie SP, Tokinaga H., Kawai Y.|
|Journal||Journal of Climate|
|Type of Article||Article|
|Keywords||air-sea interaction; anomalies; Atmosphere-ocean interaction; Clouds; heat-flux; north pacific; ocean-atmosphere interaction; satellite-observations; sea-surface temperature; variability; wind stress|
A unique set of observations on board research vessel (R/V) Mirai in April 2010 captured a striking cloud hole over a cold meander of the Kuroshio Extension (KE) east of Japan as corroborated by atmospheric soundings, ceilometer, shipboard radiation data, and satellite cloud images. Distinct differences were also observed between the warm meander farther to the north and warm water south of the KE. The atmosphere is highly unstable over the warm meander, promoting a well-mixed marine atmospheric boundary layer (MABL) and a layer of solid stratocumulus clouds capped by a strong inversion. Over the warm water south of the KE, MABL deepens and is decoupled from the ocean surface. Scattered cumulus clouds develop as captured by rapid variations in ceilometer-derived cloud base. The results show that the meandering KE front affects the entire MABL and the clouds. Such atmospheric response can potentially intensify the baroclinicity in the lower atmosphere.