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Earth System Dynamics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union

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https://doi.org/10.5194/esd-2016-68
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
15 Dec 2016
Review status
A revision of this discussion paper was accepted for the journal Earth System Dynamics (ESD) and is expected to appear here in due course.
Satellite altimetry reveals spatial patterns of variations in the Baltic Sea wave climate
Nadezhda Kudryavtseva1 and Tarmo Soomere1,2 1Wave Engineering Laboratory, Institute of Cybernetics at Tallinn University of Technology, Tallinn, 12 618, Estonia
2Estonian Academy of Sciences, Tallinn, 10 130, Estonia
Abstract. The main properties of the climate of waves in the seasonally ice-covered Baltic Sea and its decadal changes since 1990 are estimated from satellite altimetry data. The data set of significant wave heights (SWH) from all existing ten satellites is cleaned and cross-validated against in situ buoy and echosounder measurements. Even though several satellite pairs (ENVISAT/JASON-1, SARAL/JASON-2, ERS-1/TOPEX) exhibit substantial mutual temporal drift, and calm situations are ignored, the overall picture is consistent. The annual mean SWH shows tentative increase 0.005 m/yr but higher quantiles behave in a cyclic manner with a timescale of 10–15 yr. Changes in the basin-wide average SWH have a strong meridional pattern: an increase in the central and western parts of the sea and decrease in the eastern part. This pattern is likely caused by a rotation of wind directions rather than by an increase in the wind speed.

Citation: Kudryavtseva, N. and Soomere, T.: Satellite altimetry reveals spatial patterns of variations in the Baltic Sea wave climate, Earth Syst. Dynam. Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/esd-2016-68, in review, 2016.
Nadezhda Kudryavtseva and Tarmo Soomere
Interactive discussionStatus: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
Printer-friendly Version - Printer-friendly version      Supplement - Supplement
 
RC1: 'review', Anonymous Referee #1, 10 Jan 2017 Printer-friendly Version 
AC2: 'Response to Reviewer 1', Nadia Kudryavtseva, 07 Mar 2017 Printer-friendly Version 
 
RC2: 'Review', Anonymous Referee #2, 08 Feb 2017 Printer-friendly Version Supplement 
AC1: 'Response to reviewers, comments from authors', Nadia Kudryavtseva, 07 Mar 2017 Printer-friendly Version Supplement 
Nadezhda Kudryavtseva and Tarmo Soomere
Nadezhda Kudryavtseva and Tarmo Soomere

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Short summary
We discuss for the first time changes in the wave climate in the Baltic Sea over the last two decades derived from the satellite altimetry data spanning over 26 years. We found in the study that there are variations in the wave climate of the Baltic Sea, which can be interpreted as being caused predominantly by a rotation of wind directions rather than increased wind speed, implying that associated variations in the airflow direction can be a dominant driver of regional climate changes.
We discuss for the first time changes in the wave climate in the Baltic Sea over the last two...
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