Dynamical structure and wind-driven upwelling in a summertime anticyclonic eddy within Funka Bay, Hokkaido, Japan

Daisuke Takahashi, Kazuo Kido, Yoshinori Nishida, Naoto Kobayashi, Naoyuki Higaki, Hideo Miyake

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


We conducted hydrographic observations in 2002 to investigate the anticyclonic eddy that emerges every summer in Funka Bay, Hokkaido, Japan, and elucidate dynamical structure and wind-driven upwelling within the eddy. The anticyclonic eddy has a vertical scale of 32 m and is characterized by a strong baroclinic flow and a sharp pycnocline with a concave isopycnal structure. The sharp pycnocline occurs below a warm and relatively low-salinity water termed summer Funka Bay water (FS), which is formed by heating from solar radiation and dilution from river discharge in summertime Funka Bay. Flow of the anticyclonic eddy rotates as a rigid body at each layer, and the horizontal scale and rotation period of the eddy in the surface layer are about 15 km and 2.2 days, respectively. The dynamical balance of the anticyclonic eddy is well explained by the gradient flow balance. The contribution of centrifugal force to the gradient flow balance is about 27%. Therefore, the effect of the nonlinear term associated with centrifugal force cannot be neglected in considering the dynamics of the anticyclonic eddy in summertime Funka Bay. In addition, upwelling of subsurface water was observed in the surface layer of the central part of the eddy. The formation mechanism of this upwelling is consistent with interaction between horizontal uniform wind and the eddy. This upwelling is driven by upward Ekman pumping velocity related to the horizontal divergence of Ekman transport. In summertime Funka Bay, there are two wind effects that affect the anticyclonic eddy: a decay effect of the upwelling of subsurface water resulting from horizontal uniform wind (mainly northwesterly wind), and a maintenance or spin-up effect of horizontal non-uniform wind (mainly southerly-southeasterly seasonal wind) with negative wind stress curl.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1928-1946
Number of pages19
JournalContinental Shelf Research
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Aug 1
Externally publishedYes


  • Anticyclonic eddy
  • Ekman pumping
  • Funka Bay
  • Gradient flow
  • Upwelling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Geology


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