All of the available hydrographic station data (temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, phosphate and nitrate) taken in various seasons from 1964 to 1985 are analyzed to show where the upper portion of the Japan Sea Proper Water (UJSPW) is formed and how it circulates. From vertical distributions of water properties, the Japan Sea Proper Water can be divided into an upper portion and a deep water at the σ1 (potential density referred to 1000 db) depth of 32.05 kg m-3 surface. The UJSPW in the north of 40°N increases in dissolved oxygen contents and decreases in phosphate contents in winter, while no significant seasonal variation is seen in the south of 40°N. Initial nutrient contents calculated from relationships between AOU and nutrients on isopycnal surfaces show no significant regional difference in the Japan Sea; this suggests that the UJSPW has originated from a single water mass. From depth, dissolved oxygen and phosphate distributions on σ1 32.03 kg m-3 surface, core thickness distribution and subsurface phosphate distribution, it is inferred that the UJSPW is formed by the wintertime convection in the region west of 136°E between 40° and 43°N, and advected into the region west of the Yamato Rise along the Continent; finally, it must enter into the Yamato Basin.
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