Acta Oceanologica Sinica

, Volume 37, Issue 12, pp 1–8 | Cite as

North-south difference of water mass properties across the Lembeh Strait, North Sulawesi, Indonesia

  • Weibo Wang
  • Aijun PanEmail author
  • Kusmanto Edi
  • Hasanudin Muh
  • Sutisna Deny


Two field observations were conducted around the Lembeh Strait in September 2015 and 2016, respectively. Evidences indicate that seawater around the Lembeh Strait is consisted of North Pacific Tropical Water (NPTW), North Pacific Intermediate Water (NPIW), North Pacific Tropical Intermediate Water (NPTIW) and Antarctic Intermediate Water (AAIW). Around the Lembeh Strait, there exist some north-south differences in terms of water mass properties. NPTIW is only found in the southern Lembeh Strait. Water mass with the salinity of 34.6 is only detected at 200–240 m between NPTW and NPTIW in the southern Lembeh Strait, and results from the process of mixing between the saltier water transported from the South Pacific Ocean and the lighter water from the North Pacific Ocean and Sulawesi Sea. According to the analysis on mixing layer depth, it is indicated that there exists an onshore surface current in the northern Lembeh Strait and the surface current in the Lembeh Strait is southward. These dramatic differences of water masses demonstrate that the less water exchange has been occurred between the north and south of Lembeh Strait. In 2015, the positive wind stress curl covering the northern Lembeh Strait induces the shoaling of thermocline and deepening of NPIW, which show that the north-south difference of airsea system is possible of inducing north-south differences of seawater properties.

Key words

water mass Lembeh Strait north-south difference 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.



Great thanks are given to Zhou Xiwu, Zeng Mingzhang, Li Kai and all crews of R/V Baruna Jaya VIII for their efforts in field survey. Great thanks are given to Chen Bin, Dirham for their efforts in coordination of the research vessel.


  1. Barber P H. 2009. The challenge of understanding the coral triangle biodiversity hotspot. Journal of Biogeography, 36(10): 1845–1846, doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2699.2009.02198.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bingham F M, Lukas R. 1995. The distribution of intermediate water in the western equatorial pacific during January-February 1986. Deep Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers, 42(9): 1545–1573, doi: 10.1016/0967-0637(95)00064-DCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Castruccio F S, Curchitser E N, Kleypas J A. 2013. A model for quantifying oceanic transport and mesoscale variability in the coral triangle of the Indonesian/Philippines archipelago. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 118(11): 6123–6144, doi: 10.1002/2013JC009196Google Scholar
  4. De Boyer MontéGut C, Madec G, Fischer A S, et al. 2004. Mixed layer depth over the global ocean: an examination of profile data and a profile-based climatology. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 109(12): C12003, doi: 10.1029/2004JC002378Google Scholar
  5. Du Yan, Fang Guohong. 2011. Progress on the Study of the Indonesian Seas and Indonesian Throughflow. Advances in Earth Science (in Chinese), 26(11): 1131–1142Google Scholar
  6. Ffield A, Gordon A L. 1996. Tidal mixing signatures in the Indonesian seas. Journal of Physical Oceanography, 26(9): 1924–1937, doi: 10.1175/1520-0485(1996)026<1924:TMSITI>2.0.CO;2CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Ffield A, Robertson R. 2008. Temperature finestructure in the Indonesian seas. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 113(C9): C09009, doi: 10.1029/2006JC003864CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Fine R A, Lukas R, Bingham F M, et al. 1994. The western equatorial pacific: a water mass crossroads. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 99(C12): 25063–25080, doi: 10.1029/94JC02277Google Scholar
  9. Gordon A L. 2005. Oceanography of the Indonesian seas. Oceanography, 18(4): 13, doi: 10.5670/oceanog.2005.18CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Gordon A L, McClean J L. 1999. Thermohaline stratification of the Indonesian seas: model and observations. Journal of Physical Oceanography, 29(2): 198–216, doi: 10.1175/1520-0485(1999) 029<0198:TSOTIS>2.0.CO;2CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Gordon A L, Sprintall J, Van Aken H M, et al. 2010. The Indonesian Throughflow during 2004–2006 as observed by the INSTANT program. Dynamics of Atmospheres and Oceans, 50(2): 115–128, doi: 10.1016/j.dynatmoce.2009.12.002CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Hautala S L, Reid J L, Bray N. 1996. The distribution and mixing of pacific water masses in the Indonesian seas. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 101(C5): 12375–12389, doi: 10.1029/96JC00037Google Scholar
  13. Hoegh-Guldberg O, Hoegh-Guldberg H, Veron J E N, et al. 2009. The coral triangle and climate change: ecosystems, people and societies at risk. Brisbane, Australia: World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF) Australia, 229Google Scholar
  14. Kartadikaria A R, Miyazawa Y, Varlamov S M, et al. 2011. Ocean circulation for the Indonesian seas driven by tides and atmospheric forcings: comparison to observational data. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 116(C9): C09009, doi: 10.1029/2011JC007196Google Scholar
  15. Kashino Y, Aoyama M, Kawano T, et al. 1996. The Water Masses between Mindanao and New Guinea. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 101(C5): 12391–12400, doi: 10.1029/95JC03797CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Kashino Y, Watanabe H, Herunadi B, et al. 1999. Current variability at the pacific entrance of the Indonesian throughflow. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 104(C5): 11021–11035, doi: 10.1029/1999JC900033Google Scholar
  17. Kleypas J A, Castruccio F S, Curchitser E N, et al. 2015. The impact of ENSO on coral heat stress in the western equatorial pacific. Global Change Biology, 21(7): 2525–2539, doi: 10.1111/gcb.12881CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Mayer B, Damm P E. 2012. The Makassar strait throughflow and its jet. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 117(C7): C07020, doi: 10.1029/2011JC007809CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. McCreary J P, Miyama T, Furue R, et al. 2007. Interactions between the Indonesian Throughflow and Circulations in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. Progress in Oceanography, 75(1): 70–114, doi: 10.1016/j.pocean.2007.05.004CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Metzger E J, Hurlburt H E, Xu X, et al. 2010. Simulated and observed circulation in the Indonesian Seas: 1/12°Global HYCOM and the INSTANT observations. Dynamics of Atmospheres and Oceans, 50(2): 275–300, doi: 10.1016/j.dynatmoce.2010.04.002CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Schott F A, McCreary J P Jr. 2001. The monsoon circulation of the Indian ocean. Progress in Oceanography, 51(1): 1–123, doi: 10.1016/S0079-6611(01)00083-0CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Sprintall J, Gordon A L, Koch-Larrouy A, et al. 2014. The Indonesian seas and their role in the coupled ocean-climate system. Nature Geoscience, 7(7): 487–92, doi: 10.1038/ngeo2188CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Susanto R D, Gordon A L, Sprintall J. 2007. Observations and proxies of the surface layer Throughflow in Lombok strait. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 112(C3): C03S92, doi: 10.1029/2006JC003790CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. White A T, Aliño P M, Cros A, et al. 2014. Marine protected areas in the coral triangle: progress, issues, and options. Coastal Management, 42(2): 87–106, doi: 10.1080/08920753.2014.878177CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Wyrtki K. 1987. Indonesian through flow and the associated pressure gradient. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 92(C12): 12941–12946, doi: 10.1029/JC092iC12p12941Google Scholar
  26. Zhong Wenli, Zhao Jinping. 2014. Deepening of the Atlantic water core in the Canada Basin in 2003–11. Journal of Physical Oceanography, 44(9): 2353–2369, doi: 10.1175/JPO-D-13-084.1CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Chinese Society of Oceanography and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Weibo Wang
    • 1
  • Aijun Pan
    • 1
    Email author
  • Kusmanto Edi
    • 2
  • Hasanudin Muh
    • 2
  • Sutisna Deny
    • 2
  1. 1.Ocean Dynamic Laboratory, Third Institute of OceanographyMinistry of Natural ResourcesXiamenChina
  2. 2.Research Center for OceanographyIndonesian Institute of SciencesJakartaIndonesia

Personalised recommendations