Interannual variability of the South China Sea throughflow inferred from wind data and an ocean data assimilation product Academic Article uri icon


  • The Luzon Strait transport, as an index for the South China Sea throughflow, has attracted much attention. In this study the interannual variability of the Luzon Strait transport is examined, using the Island Rule and results from an ocean general circulation model. Transport variability obtained from these two approaches are consistent with each other. Assessment of contribution from each integral segment involved in the Island Rule indicates that wind stress in the western and central equatorial Pacific is the key factor regulating the interannual variability of the Luzon Strait transport, whereas the effect of local wind stress in the vicinity of the Luzon Strait is secondary. Analysis also shows that when the westerly (easterly) wind anomalies in the tropical Pacific break out, the Luzon Strait transport increases (decreases), consistent with the variations in the North Equatorial Current during El Niño (La Niña) events.

publication date

  • 2006