The long-term variation of water properties in the upper portion of the Japan Sea Proper Water (UJSPW) is examined on the basis of hydrographic data at PM10, located on the northwestern Japan Sea, and at PM05, in the Yamato Basin, taken from 1965 through 1982. At PM10, located at the southern boundary of the UJSPW formation region, dissolved oxygen fluctuation on the UJSPW core showed negative correlation with phosphate variations, but showed no significant correlation with salinity variations. At PM05 water properties fluctuated with smaller amplitudes than those at PM10 except for salinity. Dissolved oxygen variations at PM10 lead those at PM05 by 12-15 months, suggesting that the UJSPW near PM10 circulates into the Yamato Basin spending 12-15 months. Increases of dissolved oxygen contents in summer on relevant isopycnal surfaces at PM10 occurred after cold and/or windy winters except for two of eight; this suggests that larger volume of the UJSPW is formed in severe winter. Rough estimations of the formation rate and existing volume of the UJSPW are made on the basis of a climatological dataset; 1.5 × 104 yr-1 and 27.3 × 104 km3, respectively. The ventilation time of the UJSPW, 18.2 years, is about one tenth or less of residence time for the entire Japan Sea Proper Water. This indicates that the UJSPW is renewed about ten times as quick as the deeper water.
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