Some of the material in is restricted to members of the community. By logging in, you may be able to gain additional access to certain collections or items. If you have questions about access or logging in, please use the form on the Contact Page.
The purpose of this study is to investigate the impacts of cold air outbreaks (CAOs) on the sea surface temperature (SST) in the Florida Straits (FS) during different configurations (mature or immature) of the Loop Current (LC). A satellite-derived SST data set is used to calculate the difference in SST anomalies between the FS and the Yucatan Channel (YC). The SST anomaly time series is analyzed during the winter season for times of mature and immature LC configurations determined from a satellite altimetry-derived time series of LC position. This analysis shows a greater likelihood of anomalous cooling of SSTs in the FS compared to the SSTs in the YC during times of an extended, or mature, LC. This result leads to the hypothesis that surface water is subject to greater cooling during a mature LC (due to the greater residence time of the water under cold air masses) than an immature LC, and this cooler water is advected into the FS. This hypothesis is investigated by computing an approximate heat budget for the Yucatan-Loop-Florida Current (YLFC) under identical atmospheric forcing using twin ocean model simulations with mature and immature LC configurations.