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24 Jan 2008
How many fronts are there?
A study by Barbara Franco and co-authors published this week in Geophysical Research Letters describes a previously undocumented multifrontal structure along the Patagonian shelf break

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The study reveals a multiple frontal structure along the Patagonia shelf break. The fronts appear to be linked to multiple branches of the Malvinas Current. The analysis also reveals the frequent development of a band of relatively cold waters inshore of the shelf break, presumably associated with an outer shelf jet.

The shelf break front off Patagonia is associated with a major upwelling system supporting a wide range of marine species. Our study suggests that the multiple fronts may have a significant impact on the ecology of a variety of species. Similar flow structures in other sub-polar western boundary currents may exist.

Barbara is a former SACC Fellow and currently a CONICET doctoral Fellow working in her PhD at Universidad de Buenos Aires. She is currently studying particle drift schemes in numerical simulations for larval drift applications
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