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Impact of SARAL/AltiKa-Derived Sea Level Anomaly in a Data Assimilative Ocean Prediction System for the Indian Ocean

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The impact of SARAL/AltiKa derived sea level anomaly (SLA) has been studied by assimilating it along with Jason-2 and Cryosat-2 SLA in the Princeton Ocean model (POM) using ensemble optimal interpolation (EnOI) technique. For isolating the extra benefit brought by SARAKL/Altika, a parallel run with assimilation of only Jason-2 and Cryosat-2 SLA has also been conducted. The importance of SARAL SLA in a data assimilative ocean prediction system has been evaluated with special emphasis on the improvement in thermocline depth, depth of the 20° isotherm, subsurface temperature and currents. Comparison with RAMA buoy has shown a positive impact of up to 13% for 20°C isotherm and up to 17% for thermocline depth after assimilating SARAL SLA. An overall improvement in temperature profile is also observed when compared with analogous profiles from RAMA buoys and Argo floats. Improvement in zonal currents away from the equator has also been noticed.
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Keywords: Data assimilation; SARAL/AltiKa altimeter; Thermocline Depth

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Space Applications Centre, Oceanic Sciences Division, Ahmedabad, India 2: Andhra University, Department of Meteorology and Oceanography, Visakhapatnam, India

Publication date: September 10, 2015

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