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Cecilia Ferriz

Senior Oceanographer





Department Affiliation

Polar Science Center


B.S. Oceanography, Universidad Autonoma de Baja California, 2004

M.S. Physical Oceanography, University of Washington, 2008

Ph.D. Physical Oceanography, University of Washington, 2012


2000-present and while at APL-UW

Proxy representation of Arctic Ocean bottom pressure variability: Bridging gaps in GRACE observations

Peralta-Ferriz, C., J.H. Morison, and J.M. Wallace, "Proxy representation of Arctic Ocean bottom pressure variability: Bridging gaps in GRACE observations," Geophys. Res. Lett., 43, 9183-9191, doi:10.1002/2016GL070137, 2016.

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16 Sep 2016

Using time-varying ocean bottom pressure (OBP) from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE), a 9 year in situ OBP record at the North Pole, and wind reanalysis products, we perform a linear regression analysis to identify primary predictor time series that enable us to create a proxy representation of the Arctic time-varying OBP that explains the largest fraction of the observed Arctic OBP variability. After cross validation, two predictorsםNorth Pole OBP record and wind-OBP coupling from maximum covariance analysis—explain 50% of the total variance of the Arctic OBP. This work provides a means for bridging existing short gaps in GRACE measurements and potentially longer future gaps that may result if GRACE and its follow-on mission do not overlap. The technique may be applicable to bridge gaps in GRACE measurements in other oceanic regions.

Arctic Ocean circulation patterns revealed by GRACE

Peralta-Ferriz, C., J.H. Morison, J.H. Wallace, J.A. Bonin, and J. Zhang, "Arctic Ocean circulation patterns revealed by GRACE," J. Clim., 27, 1445-1468, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-13-00013.1, 2014.

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1 Feb 2014

Measurements of ocean bottom pressure (OBP) anomalies from the satellite mission Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE), complemented by information from two ocean models, are used to investigate the variations and distribution of the Arctic Ocean mass from 2002 through 2011. The forcing and dynamics associated with the observed OBP changes are explored. Major findings are the identification of three primary temporal–spatial modes of OBP variability at monthly-to-interannual time scales with the following characteristics. Mode 1 (50% of the variance) is a wintertime basin-coherent Arctic mass change forced by southerly winds through Fram Strait, and to a lesser extent through Bering Strait. These winds generate northward geostrophic current anomalies that increase the mass in the Arctic Ocean. Mode 2 (20%) reveals a mass change along the Siberian shelves, driven by surface Ekman transport and associated with the Arctic Oscillation. Mode 3 (10%) reveals a mass dipole, with mass decreasing in the Chukchi, East Siberian, and Laptev Seas, and mass increasing in the Barents and Kara Seas. During the summer, the mass decrease on the East Siberian shelves is due to the basin-scale anticyclonic atmospheric circulation that removes mass from the shelves via Ekman transport. During the winter, the forcing mechanisms include a large-scale cyclonic atmospheric circulation in the eastern-central Arctic that produces mass divergence into the Canada Basin and the Barents Sea. In addition, strengthening of the Beaufort high tends to remove mass from the East Siberian and Chukchi Seas. Supporting previous modeling results, the month-to-month variability in OBP associated with each mode is predominantly of barotropic character.

Acoustics Air-Sea Interaction & Remote Sensing Center for Environmental & Information Systems Center for Industrial & Medical Ultrasound Electronic & Photonic Systems Ocean Engineering Ocean Physics Polar Science Center