The western equatorial Pacific: a water mass crossroads

R. A. Fine, R. Lukas, F. M. Bingham, M. J. Warner, R. H. Gammon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

295 Scopus citations


The western equatorial Pacific is a crossroads for thermocline and intermediate waters formed at higher latitudes. The role of the equatorward flowing, low-latitude western boundary currents (LLWBCs) in advecting well-ventilated (with respect to atmospheric gases), higher-latitude waters varies with density. The presence of subtropical mode water in the western tropical North Pacific and Celebes Sea is attributed to an equatorward LLWBC in the North Pacific (and suggests a reason for the absence of 18° water in the tropical North Atlantic). The absence of a LLWBC in the North Atlantic highlights a basic difference between the ciruclation of the two oceans, which may be due to the different ways they import and export water. -from Authors

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25,063-25,080
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research
Issue numberC12
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Forestry
  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Soil Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Palaeontology


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