Lermusiaux, P.F.J., P.J. Haley, Jr., W.G. Leslie, A. Agarwal, O. Logutov and L.J. Burton, 2011. Multiscale Physical and Biological Dynamics in the Philippines Archipelago: Predictions and Processes. Oceanography. PhilEx Issue, 24(1), 70-89, doi:10.5670/oceanog.2011.05.
The Philippine Archipelago is remarkable because of its complex
geometry, with multiple islands and passages, and its multiscale dynamics, from the
large-scale open-ocean and atmospheric forcing, to the strong tides and internal
waves in narrow straits and at steep shelfbreaks. We employ our multiresolution
modeling system to predict and study multiscale dynamics in the region, without
the use of any synoptic in situ data, so as to evaluate modeling capabilities when
only sparse remotely sensed sea surface height is available for assimilation. We focus
on the February to March 2009 period, compare our simulation results to ocean
observations, and utilize our simulations to quantify and discover oceanic features in
the region. The findings include: the physical drivers for the biogeochemical features;
the diverse circulation features in each sub-sea and their variations on multiple scales;
the flow fields within the major straits and their variability; the transports to and from
the Sulu Sea and the corresponding balances; and finally, the multiscale mechanisms
involved in the formation of the deep Sulu Sea water.