Journal of Oceanography

, Volume 57, Issue 2, pp 121–140 | Cite as

Structure of Subsurface Intrusion of the Oyashio Water into the Kuroshio Extension and Formation Process of the North Pacific Intermediate Water

  • Kuniaki Okuda
  • Ichiro Yasuda
  • Yutaka Hiroe
  • Yugo Shimizu


In order to understand the actual formation process of the North Pacific Intermediate Water (NPIW), structure of subsurface intrusions of the Oyashio water and the mixing of the Oyashio and the Kuroshio waters in and around the Kuroshio Extension (KE) were examined on the basis of a synoptic CTD observation carried out in May-June 1992. The fresh Oyashio water in the south of Hokkaido was transported into KE region through the Mixed Water Region (MWR) in the form of subsurface intrusions along two main paths. The one was along the east coast of northern Japan through the First Branch of the Oyashio (FBO) and the other along the eastern face of a warm streamer which connected KE with a warm core ring through the Second Branch of the Oyashio (SBO). The fresh Oyashio water extended southward through FBO strongly mixed with the saline NPIW transported by the Kuroshio in the south of Japan (old NPIW) in and around the warm streamer. On the other hand, the one through SBO well preserved its original properties and extended eastward beyond 150°E along KE with a form of rather narrow band. The intrusion ejected Oyashio water lens with a diameter of 50–60 km southward across KE axis and split northward into the MWR involved in the interaction of KE and a warm core ring, which were supposed to be primary processes of new NPIW formation.

North Pacific Intermediate Water Mixed Water Region Oyashio Kuroshio Extension warm core ring subsurface intrusion Oyashio water lens 


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Copyright information

© The Oceanographic Society of Japan 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kuniaki Okuda
    • 1
  • Ichiro Yasuda
    • 2
  • Yutaka Hiroe
    • 3
  • Yugo Shimizu
    • 1
  1. 1.Tohoku National Fisheries Research InstituteShiogama, MiyagiJapan
  2. 2.Department of Earth and Planetary Science, Graduate School of ScienceUniversity of TokyoBunkyo-ku, TokyoJapan
  3. 3.National Research Institute of Fisheries ScienceKanazawa-ku, Yokohama, KanagawaJapan

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