Eddies in the Straits of Florida

Florida Straits, South Florida and Keys Hybrid Coordinate Ocean Model (FKeyS-HYCOM) Eddies in the Straits of Florida
The Florida Current (FC) is dominating the ocean circulation in this region.
The variability of the FC extends over a large range of spatial and temporal scales, with significant seasonal and interannual cycles, as well as mesoscale, submesoscale, and tidal fluctuations.
Mesoscale features are mostly associated with onshore-offshore meandering of the FC. Cyclonic FC Frontal Eddies occur all along the Florida Keys.

Eddy passages simulated in FKEYS-HYCOM from May 29 to June 17, 2004

The month of June 2004 is very rich with eddies.
During 20 days starting in May 29 about six eddies were visible in daily maps of Sea Surface Height (SSH).
The eddies stay at the inner side of the strong Florida Current during their journey.
An eddy marked as 1 appears at the tip of the lower Keys on May 29 and follows along the Keys to the Key Biscayne offshore on June 9.
Another eddy marked as 2 forms and follows the Eddy 1 along the Keys until it is merged with an eddy marked as 3 (which appears on June 7) on June 9.
This merged eddy marked as 4 keeps its elongated shape until June 14.

Following the Eddy 4, there are two more eddies marked as 5 and 6.

Villy Kourafalou — vkourafalou@rsmas.miami.edu
HeeSook Kang — hkang@rsmas.miami.edu