A shipboard high-resolution hydrographic survey in the subtropical region of the western North Pacific conducted from October to November 2008 detected part of a cyclonic eddy around 30°N, 145°E. This eddy had propagated westward in the region south of the Kuroshio extension for at least 6 months as a wavelike disturbance. Within this eddy, isopycnals shallowed between a depth of 600 m and just below the surface mixed layer. In addition, maximal dissolved oxygen concentrations were observed in the subsurface layer between depths of 50 and 100 m. Nitrate was depleted within this subsurface maximal oxygen layer. These results suggest that nutrients in the deeper layers were supplied into the euphotic layer as a result of the uplift of isopycnals in the eddy, fueling the photosynthesis of phytoplankton in the subsurface and emitting an excess of oxygen due to new production. Compared with the outside of the eddy, the enhancement of oxygen and the decrease of nitrate in the center of the eddy were estimated to be 2.7 mol O2 m−2 and 0.22 mol N m−2, respectively. The primary productivity calculated using the eddy transition speed of 5.1 km day−1 was 548 mg C m−2 day−1 at the center of the eddy. The enhanced primary productivity due to the passage of the eddy is likely to have an important role in the ecosystem and on material cycling in the subtropical region.
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