Sujata Murty - Understanding Indo-Pacific oceanic exchange through the Indonesian Throughflow using coral geochemistry and high-resolution ocean models

Event type: 
17 September 2019
11.00am - 12.00pm

Climate Change Research Centre, Seminar Room, Mathews Building 4th floor, UNSW, Sydney

Dr. Sujata Murty
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, US
Climate Change Research Centre

The Indonesian Throughflow (ITF) serves as an important oceanic teleconnection for Indo-Pacific climate, altering heat and buoyancy transport from the Pacific to the Indian Ocean. Equatorial Pacific wind forcing transmitted through the ITF impacts interannual to interdecadal Indian Ocean thermocline depth and heat content, with implications for preconditioning Indian Ocean Dipole events. Yet the modulation of Indian Ocean thermal properties at seasonal timescales is still poorly understood. In this talk, I synthesize coral δ18O records from main ITF pathways, instrumental climate indices, and simulated ocean variability (sea surface salinity and temperature, heat content, mixed layer depth) from state-of-the-art NEMO ocean model hindcasts to explore drivers of seasonal to multi-decadal variability. This synthesis indicates that the paleoproxy records are capturing important features of regional hydrography and Indo-Pacific exchange, including responses to regional monsoon variability. Such proxy-model comparison is critical for understanding the drivers of variability related to changes in ITF oceanic teleconnections over the 19th and 20th centuries.


Brief Biography: Sujata received her Ph.D. in oceanography from Nanyang Technological University in 2018. She is interested in using paleoclimate archives and models to understand past changes in Indo-Pacific climate and ocean systems from seasonal to centennial timescales. During her Ph.D., Sujata used geochemical records from Southeast Asian corals to reconstruct past changes in surface ocean circulation, precipitation and Indo-Pacific climate. Sujata is now a Postdoctoral Scholar at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, where she synthesizes coral paleoproxy records with high-resolution ocean model simulations to examine the drivers of Indo-Pacific climate and ocean variability over the past few centuries.