№ 1, 2019

Features of seasonal changes of the Caspian Sea level

Safarov E.S.¹, Cretaux J.-F.², Mammadov R.M.¹, Arsen A.³, Safarov S.H.¹

1 – Institute of Geography of ANAS 115, H.Cavid av., Baku, Azerbaijan, AZ1143: elnur.safarov@geo.az

2 – CNES/Legos 14, avenue Edouard Belin, Toulouse, France, 31400

3 – Freelancer, Warsaw, Poland

Summary. The Caspian Sea is the largest closed reservoir in the world. In the absence of a direct connection with the world ocean, the closed Caspian Sea is characterized by significant secular changes, inter-annual and seasonal variability in the level. In the work, according to observations of radar altimetry of ENVISAT, Jason 1 and Jason 2 satellites, seasonal variations in the level of the Caspian Sea, as well as features of their amplitude distribution, also the phases of their appearance over the entire sea area, are investigated. According to a special method, the average annual values of the amplitude and the occurrence phase of seasonal fluctuations of water level for various areas of the sea area were calculated using pre-determined satellite tracks. The influence of the Volga River flow on the amplitude and phase of seasonal variations in the various areas of the Caspian Sea level has been studied. Studies have shown that the amplitude of seasonal fluctuations in sea level of the North Caspian Sea is greater than in the Middle and South Caspian. They also differ in direction from east to west. The earliest phases of the sea level amplitudes were recorded in the Northern Caspian, below the Volga delta (in May), and in the rest of the sea – much later (June-July). It has been established that the influence of the Volga River flow is most sensitive in the northern part of the sea, and towards the south its influence gradually decreases, and other factors start to prevail (evaporation, precipitation). The paper discusses the reasons for this difference.

Keywords: the Caspian Sea, Volga River, satellite altimetry, track, Jason 1-2, ENVISAT, amplitude, phase, sea level



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