Scale-based comparison of Sea Level observations in the North Atlantic from Satellite Altimetry and Tide Gauges

  • S. M. Barbosa
  • M. J. Fernandes
  • M. E. Silva
Part of the International Association of Geodesy Symposia book series (IAG SYMPOSIA, volume 130)


A comparative study is carried out for sea level observations in the North Atlantic from tide gauges and satellite altimetry. Monthly tide gauge records from 12 stations in both sides of the North Atlantic from January 1993 to December 2003 and monthly time series of sea level anomalies derived from TOPEX measurements are considered. The degree of association between tide gauge and altimetry observations is analysed for different scales by computing the correlation between the sea level components resulting from a multiresolution analysis based on the maximal overlap discrete wavelet transform. A similar correlation analysis is carried out to assess the relationship between the sea level observations and climate variables: sea surface temperature, precipitation rate and wind speed. The results show that altimetry and tide gauge observations are strongly correlated, as expected, but also that the relation is scale dependent, with covariability driven by the seasonal signal for most stations. For all variables the obtained correlation patterns exhibit significant spatial variability reflecting the diversity of local conditions affecting coastal sea level.


Sea level satellite altimetry tide gauges discrete wavelet transform 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. M. Barbosa
    • 1
  • M. J. Fernandes
    • 1
  • M. E. Silva
    • 1
  1. 1.Departamento de Matematica Aplicada, Faculdade de CiênciasUniversidade do PortoPortoPortugal

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