Characterizing the circulation off the Kenyan-Tanzanian coast using an ocean model Public Deposited


Attribute NameValues
  • The Kenyan-Tanzanian coastal region in the western Indian Ocean faces several environmental challenges including coral reef conservation, fisheries management, coastal erosion, and nearshore pollution. The region lacks hydrodynamic records and oceanographic studies at adequate spatial and temporal scales to provide information relevant to the local environmental issues. We have developed a 4 km horizontal resolution ocean circulation model of the region: the Kenyan-Tanzanian Coastal Model (KTCM) that provides coastal circulation and hydrography with higher resolution than previous models and observational studies of this region. Comparisons to temperature profiles, satellite-derived sea surface temperature and sea surface height anomaly fields, indicate that the model reproduces the main features of the regional circulation, while greatly increasing the details of the nearshore circulation. We describe the seasonal ocean circulation and hydrography of the Kenyan-Tanzanian coastal region based on a climatology of 8 years (2000–2007) of the KTCM simulations. The regional monsoon seasonality produces two distinct coastal circulation regimes: (1) during December–March, there are relatively sluggish shelf flows and (2) during April–November, there are strong northward transports. Simulations from the model will be useful for examining dispersal of pollutants and spatial connectivity of coral reef species.
Resource Type
Date Available
Date Issued
  • Mayorga‐Adame, C. G., Strub, P. T., Batchelder, H. P., & Spitz, Y. H. (2016). Characterizing the circulation off the Kenyan‐Tanzanian coast using an ocean model. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 121(2), 1377-1399. doi:10.1002/2015JC010860
Journal Title
Journal Volume
  • 121
Journal Issue/Number
  • 2
Rights Statement
Funding Statement (additional comments about funding)
  • Support for C.G.M.A. was provided by Fulbright-Garcia Robles scholarships of the Comision Mexico-Estados Unidos (COMEXUS), Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnologia (CONACYT), and NSF grant OCE-0630471. Support for P.T.S. was provided by NSF grant OCE-0815007, NASA grant NNX08AR40G, NASA grant NNX13AH22G, and NOAA grant NA08NES4400013. Support for H.P.B. was provided by NSF grant OCE-0816358.
Peer Reviewed



This work has no parents.