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    Evolving Perspectives on Abrupt Seasonal Changes of the General Circulation
    Jianhua LU,Tapio SCHNEIDER
    2017, 34 (10): 1185-1194.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-7068-4
    Abstract   ( 489 ) HTML   PDF (7360KB) (319)

    Professor Duzheng YE (Tu-cheng YEH) was decades ahead of his time in proposing a model experiment to investigate whether abrupt seasonal changes of the general circulation can arise through circulation feedbacks alone, unrelated to underlying inhomogeneities at the lower boundary. Here, we introduce Professor YEH's ideas during the 1950s and 1960s on the general circulation and summarize the results and suggestions of Yeh1959 on abrupt seasonal changes. We then review recent advances in understanding abrupt seasonal changes arising from model experiments like those proposed by Yeh1959. The model experiments show that circulation feedbacks can indeed give rise to abrupt seasonal transitions. In these transitions, large-scale eddies that originate in midlatitudes and interact with the zonal mean flow and meridional overturning circulations in the tropics play central roles.

    On Multi-Level Thinking and Scientific Understanding
    Michael Edgeworth McINTYRE
    2017, 34 (10): 1150-1158.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6283-3
    Abstract   ( 442 ) HTML   PDF (1349KB) (359)

    Professor Duzheng YE's name has been familiar to me ever since my postdoctoral years at MIT with Professors Jule CHARNEY and Norman PHILLIPS, back in the late 1960s. I had the enormous pleasure of meeting Professor YE personally in 1992 in Beijing. His concern to promote the very best science and to use it well, and his thinking on multi-level orderly human activities, reminds me not only of the communication skills we need as scientists but also of the multi-level nature of science itself. Here I want to say something (a) about what science is; (b) about why multi-level thinking——and taking more than one viewpoint——is so important for scientific as well as for other forms of understanding; and (c) about what is meant, at a deep level, by "scientific understanding" and trying to communicate it, not only with lay persons but also across professional disciplines. I hope that Professor YE would approve.

    Two Ultraviolet Radiation Datasets that Cover China
    Hui LIU,Bo HU,Yuesi WANG,Guangren LIU,Liqin TANG,Dongsheng JI,Yongfei BAI,Weikai BAO,Xin CHEN,Yunming CHEN,Weixin DING,Xiaozeng HAN,Fei HE,Hui HUANG,Zhenying HUANG,Xinrong LI,Yan LI,Wenzhao LIU,Luxiang LIN,Zhu OUYANG,Boqiang QIN,Weijun SHEN,Yanjun SHEN,Hongxin SU,Changchun SONG,Bo SUN,Song SUN,Anzhi WANG,Genxu WANG,Huimin WANG,Silong WANG,Youshao WANG,Wenxue WEI,Ping XIE,Zongqiang XIE,Xiaoyuan YAN,Fanjiang ZENG,Fawei ZHANG,Yangjian ZHANG,Yiping ZHANG,Chengyi ZHAO,Wenzhi ZHAO,Xueyong ZHAO,Guoyi ZHOU,Bo ZHU
    2017, 34 (7): 805-815.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6293-1
    Abstract   ( 286 ) HTML   PDF (5301KB) (243)

    Ultraviolet (UV) radiation has significant effects on ecosystems, environments, and human health, as well as atmospheric processes and climate change. Two ultraviolet radiation datasets are described in this paper. One contains hourly observations of UV radiation measured at 40 Chinese Ecosystem Research Network stations from 2005 to 2015. CUV3 broadband radiometers were used to observe the UV radiation, with an accuracy of 5%, which meets the World Meteorology Organization's measurement standards. The extremum method was used to control the quality of the measured datasets. The other dataset contains daily cumulative UV radiation estimates that were calculated using an all-sky estimation model combined with a hybrid model. The reconstructed daily UV radiation data span from 1961 to 2014. The mean absolute bias error and root-mean-square error are smaller than 30% at most stations, and most of the mean bias error values are negative, which indicates underestimation of the UV radiation intensity. These datasets can improve our basic knowledge of the spatial and temporal variations in UV radiation. Additionally, these datasets can be used in studies of potential ozone formation and atmospheric oxidation, as well as simulations of ecological processes.

    The Pioneering Works of Professor Duzheng YE on Atmospheric Dispersion, Tibetan Plateau Meteorology, and Air-Sea Interaction
    Ngar-Cheung LAU
    2017, 34 (10): 1137-1149.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6256-6
    Abstract   ( 249 ) HTML   PDF (16590KB) (145)

    This paper provides an overview of the impacts of the original works of Professor Duzheng YE on a selected set of observational and model studies with which the present author has been associated over the past several decades. The main themes of these works include atmospheric energy dispersion, air-land interactions over the Tibetan Plateau, and El Niño-related air-sea coupling over East Asia. The dispersive behavior of observed atmospheric fluctuations accompanying cold surge events in East Asia is demonstrated. Cold air outbreaks over Korea and southern China are coincident with the successive downstream development of troughs and ridges, with the group velocity of such wave packets being notably faster than the phase propagation speed of individual troughs and ridges. In a more general context, dispersive features are also discernible from lagged teleconnection charts and cross-spectra of observed and model-simulated geopotential height variations on 10-30-day time scales. Using the output from a high-resolution general circulation model, the relative contributions of condensational, sensible, and radiative heating to the atmospheric energy budget over the Tibetan Plateau are documented. The rapid changes of the upper tropospheric Tibetan anticyclone and East Asian mei-yu ("plum rain") precipitation band associated with the development of the Asian monsoon system are described. The principal anomalies in sea level pressure, surface wind, precipitation and sea surface temperature over southeastern China and the Philippine Sea region during El Niño events are presented. The contributions of remote El Niño-related forcing and local air-sea interaction to the occurrence of these anomalies are assessed.

    Performance of RegCM4 over Major River Basins in China
    Xuejie GAO,Ying SHI,Zhenyu HAN,Meili WANG,Jia WU,Dongfeng ZHANG,Ying XU,Filippo GIORGI
    2017, 34 (4): 441-455.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-016-6179-7
    Abstract   ( 248 ) HTML   PDF (40196KB) (557)

    A long-term simulation for the period 1990-2010 is conducted with the latest version of the International Centre for Theoretical Physics' Regional Climate Model (RegCM4), driven by ERA-Interim boundary conditions at a grid spacing of 25 km. The Community Land Model (CLM) is used to describe land surface processes, with updates in the surface parameters, including the land cover and surface emissivity. The simulation is compared against observations to evaluate the model performance in reproducing the present day climatology and interannual variability over the 10 main river basins in China, with focus on surface air temperature and precipitation. Temperature and precipitation from the ERA-Interim reanalysis are also considered in the model assessment. Results show that the model reproduces the present day climatology over China and its main river basins, with better performances in June-July-August compared to December-January-February (DJF). In DJF, we find a warm bias at high latitudes, underestimated precipitation in the south, and overestimated precipitation in the north. The model in general captures the observed interannual variability, with greater skill for temperature. We also find an underestimation of heavy precipitation events in eastern China, and an underestimation of consecutive dry days in northern China and the Tibetan Plateau. Similar biases for both mean climatology and extremes are found in the ERA-Interim reanalysis, indicating the difficulties for climate models in simulating extreme monsoon climate events over East Asia.

    Impact of Surface Sensible Heating over the Tibetan Plateau on the Western Pacific Subtropical High: A Land-Air-Sea Interaction Perspective
    Anmin DUAN,Ruizao SUN,Jinhai HE
    2017, 34 (2): 157-168.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-016-6008-z
    Abstract   ( 238 ) HTML   PDF (5227KB) (275)

    The impact of surface sensible heating over the Tibetan Plateau (SHTP) on the western Pacific subtropical high (WPSH) with and without air-sea interaction was investigated in this study. Data analysis indicated that SHTP acts as a relatively independent factor in modulating the WPSH anomaly compared with ENSO events. Stronger spring SHTP is usually followed by an enhanced and westward extension of the WPSH in summer, and vice versa. Numerical experiments using both an AGCM and a CGCM confirmed that SHTP influences the large-scale circulation anomaly over the Pacific, which features a barotropic anticyclonic response over the northwestern Pacific and a cyclonic response to the south. Owing to different background circulation in spring and summer, such a response facilitates a subdued WPSH in spring but an enhanced WPSH in summer. Moreover, the CGCM results showed that the equatorial low-level westerly at the south edge of the cyclonic anomaly brings about a warm SST anomaly (SSTA) in the equatorial central Pacific via surface warm advection. Subsequently, an atmospheric Rossby wave is stimulated to the northwest of the warm SSTA, which in turn enhances the atmospheric dipole anomalies over the western Pacific. Therefore, the air-sea feedbacks involved tend to reinforce the effect of SHTP on the WPSH anomaly, and the role of SHTP on general circulation needs to be considered in a land-air-sea interaction framework.

    Atmospheric Circulation and Dynamic Mechanism for Persistent Haze Events in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Region
    Ping WU,Yihui DING,Yanju LIU
    2017, 34 (4): 429-440.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-016-6158-z
    Abstract   ( 231 ) HTML   PDF (4924KB) (423)

    In this study, regional persistent haze events (RPHEs) in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei (BTH) region were identified based on the Objective Identification Technique for Regional Extreme Events for the period 1980-2013. The formation mechanisms of the severe RPHEs were investigated with focus on the atmospheric circulation and dynamic mechanisms. Results indicated that: (1) 49 RPHEs occurred during the past 34 years. (2) The severe RPHEs could be categorized into two types according to the large-scale circulation, i.e. the zonal westerly airflow (ZWA) type and the high-pressure ridge (HPR) type. When the ZWA-type RPHEs occurred, the BTH region was controlled by near zonal westerly airflow in the mid-upper troposphere. Southwesterly winds prevailed in the lower troposphere, and near-surface wind speeds were only 1-2 m s-1. Warm and humid air originating from the northwestern Pacific was transported into the region, where the relative humidity was 70% to 80%, creating favorable moisture conditions. When the HPR-type RPHEs appeared, northwesterly airflow in the mid-upper troposphere controlled the region. Westerly winds prevailed in the lower troposphere and the moisture conditions were relatively weak. (3) Descending motion in the mid-lower troposphere caused by the above two circulation types provided a crucial dynamic mechanism for the formation of the two types of RPHEs. The descending motion contributed to a reduction in the height of the planetary boundary layer (PBL), which generated an inversion in the lower troposphere. This inversion trapped the abundant pollution and moisture in the lower PBL, leading to high concentrations of pollutants.

    Characteristics of Temperature Change in China over the Last 2000 years and Spatial Patterns of Dryness/Wetness during Cold and Warm Periods
    Quansheng GE, Haolong LIU, Xiang MA, Jingyun ZHENG, Zhixin HAO
    2017, 34 (8): 941-951.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6238-8
    Abstract   ( 209 ) HTML   PDF (4639KB) (475)

    This paper presents new high-resolution proxies and paleoclimatic reconstructions for studying climate changes in China for the past 2000 years. Multi-proxy synthesized reconstructions show that temperature variation in China has exhibited significant 50-70-yr, 100-120-yr, and 200-250-yr cycles. Results also show that the amplitudes of decadal and centennial temperature variation were 1.3°C and 0.7°C, respectively, with the latter significantly correlated with long-term changes in solar radiation, especially cold periods, which correspond approximately to sunspot minima. The most rapid warming in China occurred over AD 1870-2000, at a rate of 0.56° 0.42°C (100 yr)-1; however, temperatures recorded in the 20th century may not be unprecedented for the last 2000 years, as data show records for the periods AD 981-1100 and AD 1201-70 are comparable to the present. The ensemble means of dryness/wetness spatial patterns in eastern China across all centennial warm periods illustrate a tripole pattern: dry south of 25°N, wet from 25°-30°N, and dry to the north of 30°N. However, for all centennial cold periods, this spatial pattern also exhibits a meridional distribution. The increase in precipitation over the monsoonal regions of China associated with the 20th century warming can primarily be attributed to a mega El Niño-Southern Oscillation and the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation. In addition, a significant association between increasing numbers of locusts and dry/cold conditions is found in eastern China. Plague intensity also generally increases in concert with wetness in northern China, while more precipitation is likely to have a negative effect in southern China.

    Relationship between Indian and East Asian Summer Rainfall Variations
    Renguang WU
    2017, 34 (1): 4-15.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-016-6216-6
    Abstract   ( 197 ) HTML   PDF (1417KB) (283)

    The Indian and East Asian summer monsoons are two components of the whole Asian summer monsoon system. Previous studies have indicated in-phase and out-of-phase variations between Indian and East Asian summer rainfall. The present study reviews the current understanding of the connection between Indian and East Asian summer rainfall. The review covers the relationship of northern China, southern Japan, and South Korean summer rainfall with Indian summer rainfall; the atmospheric circulation anomalies connecting Indian and East Asian summer rainfall variations; the long-term change in the connection between Indian and northern China rainfall and the plausible reasons for the change; and the influence of ENSO on the relationship between Indian and East Asian summer rainfall and its change. While much progress has been made about the relationship between Indian and East Asian summer rainfall variations, there are several remaining issues that need investigation. These include the processes involved in the connection between Indian and East Asian summer rainfall, the non-stationarity of the connection and the plausible reasons, the influences of ENSO on the relationship, the performance of climate models in simulating the relationship between Indian and East Asian summer rainfall, and the relationship between Indian and East Asian rainfall intraseasonal fluctuations.

    Intensive Radiosonde Measurements of Summertime Convection over the Inner Mongolia Grassland in 2014: Difference between Shallow Cumulus and Other Conditions
    Hongrong SHI,Hongbin CHEN,Xiang'ao XIA,Xuehua FAN,Jinqiang ZHANG,Jun LI,Chao LING
    2017, 34 (6): 783-790.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6284-2
    Abstract   ( 184 ) HTML   PDF (2009KB) (228)

    Using radiosonde measurements from 26 July to 30 July 2014 at Baiqi over the Inner Mongolia grassland of China, the vertical structure of shallow cumulus (SCu) clouds and associated environmental conditions were investigated. The cloud base height and the cloud top height of SCu was 3.4 km and 5 km, respectively. The temperature of the SCu layer was less than 0°C. The horizontal advection of specific humidity was smaller than the vertical transport in the atmosphere below 5 km. Above 5 km, the thermodynamic structure of the atmosphere remained stable. At the interface of the cloud layer and free air atmosphere, there was obvious wind shear and a temperature inversion (2.9°C). Comparisons of environmental parameters associated with cumulus congestus, rain and clear days, showed that the formation of SCu was characterized by a higher Bowen ratio (high sensible heat flux and low latent heat flux), which indicated intensive turbulence in the boundary layer. The formation of SCu was associated with the boundary layer height exceeding the lifting condensation level. The maintenance of SCu was likely associated with the lower convective available potential energy, weak wind shear, and weak subsidence of the synoptic system, which did not favor the dramatic vertical development of SCu and thereby the transformation of SCu to cumulus congestus.

    Autumn Snow Cover Variability over Northern Eurasia and Roles of Atmospheric Circulation
    Kunhui YE,Renguang WU
    2017, 34 (7): 847-858.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6287-z
    Abstract   ( 170 ) HTML   PDF (3945KB) (150)

    This study analyzes the variability of northern Eurasian snow cover (SC) in autumn and the impacts of atmospheric circulation changes. The region of large SC variability displays a southward shift from September to November, following the seasonal progression of the transition zones of surface air temperature (SAT). The dominant pattern of SC variability in September and October features a zonal distribution, and that in November displays an obvious west-east contrast. Surface air cooling and snowfall increase are two factors for larger SC. The relative contribution of SAT and snowfall changes to SC, however, varies with the region and depends upon the season. The downward longwave radiation and atmospheric heat advection play important roles in SAT changes. Anomalous convergence of water vapor flux contributes to enhanced snowfall. The changes in downward longwave radiation are associated with those in atmospheric water content and column thickness. Changes in snowfall and the transport of atmospheric moisture determine the atmospheric moisture content in September and October, and the snowfall appears to be a main factor for atmospheric moisture change in November. These results indicate that atmospheric circulation changes play an important role in snow variability over northern Eurasia in autumn. Overall, the coupling between autumn Eurasian snow and atmospheric circulation may not be driven by external forcing.

    Potential Deformation and Its Application to the Diagnosis of Heavy Precipitation in Mesoscale Convective Systems
    Na LI,Lingkun RAN,Linna ZHANG,Shouting GAO
    2017, 34 (7): 894-908.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6282-4
    Abstract   ( 158 ) HTML   PDF (8354KB) (106)

    Many observational studies have shown that deformation, like vertical vorticity and divergence, is closely related to the occurrence and distribution of strong precipitation. In this paper, to involve deformation in precipitation diagnosis, a new parameter called potential deformation (PD) is derived and then applied to precipitation detection within a simulated mesoscale convective system (MCS). It is shown that PD includes both stretching deformation and shearing deformation and shares similar characteristics with deformation insofar as it does not change with the rotating coordinate. Diagnosis of the simulated MCS reveals that PD performs well in tracing the MCS' precipitation. In terms of their distributional pattern, the large-value areas of PD are similar to the precipitation in the different development stages of the MCS. A detailed analysis of the physical processes contained within the PD shows that it can reflect the three-dimensional moisture variation, vertical wind shear and wind deformation within the MCS. These structures are usually a comprehensive reflection of the characteristics of the surface cold pool, rear inflow jet, downward cold air flow and upward warm moist flow within the precipitating convective cells. For this reason, the PD shows much stronger anomalies in the precipitating atmosphere than the non-precipitating atmosphere, which implies considerable potential for its application in detecting heavy precipitation within MCSs.

    Changes in Mean and Extreme Temperature and Precipitation over the Arid Region of Northwestern China: Observation and Projection
    Yujie WANG, Botao ZHOU, Dahe QIN, Jia WU, Rong GAO, Lianchun SONG
    2017, 34 (3): 287-305.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-016-6160-5
    Abstract   ( 157 ) HTML   PDF (6225KB) (274)

    This paper reports a comprehensive study on the observed and projected spatiotemporal changes in mean and extreme climate over the arid region of northwestern China, based on gridded observation data and CMIP5 simulations under the RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 scenarios. The observational results reveal an increase in annual mean temperature since 1961, largely attributable to the increase in minimum temperature. The annual mean precipitation also exhibits a significant increasing tendency. The precipitation amount in the most recent decade was greater than in any preceding decade since 1961. Seasonally, the greatest increase in temperature and precipitation appears in winter and in summer, respectively. Widespread significant changes in temperature-related extremes are consistent with warming, with decreases in cold extremes and increases in warm extremes. The warming of the coldest night is greater than that of the warmest day, and changes in cold and warm nights are more evident than for cold and warm days. Extreme precipitation and wet days exhibit an increasing trend, and the maximum number of consecutive dry days shows a tendency toward shorter duration. Multi-model ensemble mean projections indicate an overall continual increase in temperature and precipitation during the 21st century. Decreases in cold extremes, increases in warm extremes, intensification of extreme precipitation, increases in wet days, and decreases in consecutive dry days, are expected under both emissions scenarios, with larger changes corresponding to stronger radiative forcing.

    Sensitivity of Potential Evapotranspiration Estimation to the Thornthwaite and Penman-Monteith Methods in the Study of Global Drylands
    Qing YANG,Zhuguo MA,Ziyan ZHENG,Yawen DUAN
    2017, 34 (12): 1381-1394.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6313-1
    Abstract   ( 154 ) HTML   PDF (2353KB) (153)

    Drylands are among those regions most sensitive to climate and environmental changes and human-induced perturbations. The most widely accepted definition of the term dryland is a ratio, called the Surface Wetness Index (SWI), of annual precipitation to potential evapotranspiration (PET) being below 0.65. PET is commonly estimated using the Thornthwaite (PET_Th) and Penman-Monteith equations (PET_PM). The present study compared spatiotemporal characteristics of global drylands based on the SWI with PET_Th and PET_PM. Results showed vast differences between PET_Th and PET_PM; however, the SWI derived from the two kinds of PET showed broadly similar characteristics in the interdecadal variability of global and continental drylands, except in North America, with high correlation coefficients ranging from 0.58 to 0.89. It was found that, during 1901-2014, global hyper-arid and semi-arid regions expanded, arid and dry sub-humid regions contracted, and drylands underwent interdecadal fluctuation. This was because precipitation variations made major contributions, whereas PET changes contributed to a much lesser degree. However, distinct differences in the interdecadal variability of semi-arid and dry sub-humid regions were found. This indicated that the influence of PET changes was comparable to that of precipitation variations in the global dry-wet transition zone. Additionally, the contribution of PET changes to the variations in global and continental drylands gradually enhanced with global warming, and the Thornthwaite method was found to be increasingly less applicable under climate change.

    Quality Assessment and Forecast Sensitivity of Global Remote Sensing Observations
    Swapan MALLICK,Devajyoti DUTTA,Ki-Hong MIN
    2017, 34 (3): 371-382.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-016-6109-8
    Abstract   ( 153 ) HTML   PDF (3137KB) (80)

    The satellite-derived wind from cloud and moisture features of geostationary satellites is an important data source for numerical weather prediction (NWP) models. These datasets and global positioning system radio occultation (GPSRO) satellite radiances are assimilated in the four-dimensional variational atmospheric data assimilation system of the UKMO Unified Model in India. This study focuses on the importance of these data in the NWP system and their impact on short-term 24-h forecasts. The quality of the wind observations is compared to the short-range forecast from the model background. The observation increments (observation minus background) are computed as the satellite-derived wind minus the model forecast with a 6-h lead time. The results show the model background has a large easterly wind component compared to satellite observations. The importance of each observation in the analysis is studied using an adjoint-based forecast sensitivity to observation method. The results show that at least around 50% of all types of satellite observations are beneficial. In terms of individual contribution, METEOSAT-7 shows a higher percentage of impact (nearly 50%), as compared to GEOS, MTSAT-2 and METEOSAT-10, all of which have a less than 25% impact. In addition, the impact of GPSRO, infrared atmospheric sounding interferometer (IASI) and atmospheric infrared sounder (AIRS) data is calculated. The GPSRO observations have beneficial impacts up to 50 km. Over the Southern Hemisphere, the high spectral radiances from IASI and AIRS show a greater impact than over the Northern Hemisphere. The results in this study can be used for further improvements in the use of new and existing satellite observations.

    On the Contrasting Decadal Changes of Diurnal Surface Temperature Range between the Tibetan Plateau and Southeastern China during the 1980s-2000s
    Yang YANG,Rongcai REN
    2017, 34 (2): 181-198.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-016-6077-z
    Abstract   ( 151 ) HTML   PDF (2987KB) (147)

    The diurnal surface temperature range (DTR) has become significantly smaller over the Tibetan Plateau (TP) but larger in southeastern China, despite the daily mean surface temperature having increased steadily in both areas during recent decades. Based on ERA-Interim reanalysis data covering 1979-2012, this study shows that the weakened DTR over TP is caused by stronger warming of daily minimum surface temperature (Tmin) and a weak cooling of the daily maximum surface temperature (Tmax); meanwhile, the enhanced DTR over southeastern China is mainly associated with a relatively stronger/weaker warming of Tmax/Tmin. A further quantitative analysis of DTR changes through a process-based decomposition method——the Coupled Surface-Atmosphere Climate Feedback Response Analysis Method (CFRAM)——indicates that changes in radiative processes are mainly responsible for the decreased DTR over the TP. In particular, the increased low-level cloud cover tends to induce the radiative cooling/warming during daytime/nighttime, and the increased water vapor helps to decrease the DTR through the stronger radiative warming during nighttime than daytime. Contributions from the changes in all radiative processes (over -2°C) are compensated for by those from the stronger decreased surface sensible heat flux during daytime than during nighttime (approximately 2.5°C), but are co-contributed by the changes in atmospheric dynamics (approximately -0.4°C) and the stronger increased latent heat flux during daytime (approximately -0.8°C). In contrast, the increased DTR over southeastern China is mainly contributed by the changes in cloud, water vapor and atmospheric dynamics. The changes in surface heat fluxes have resulted in a decrease in DTR over southeastern China.

    Statistical Characteristics of Raindrop Size Distribution in the Tibetan Plateau and Southern China
    Yahao WU,Liping LIU
    2017, 34 (6): 727-736.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-016-5235-7
    Abstract   ( 147 ) HTML   PDF (555KB) (196)

    The characteristics of raindrop size distribution (DSD) over the Tibetan Plateau and southern China are studied in this paper, using the DSD data from April to August 2014 collected by HSC-PS32 disdrometers in Nagqu and Yangjiang, comprising a total of 9430 and 6366 1-min raindrop spectra, respectively. The raindrop spectra, characteristics of parameter variations with rainfall rate, and the relationships between reflectivity factor (Z) and rainfall rate (R) are analyzed, as well as their DSD changes with precipitation type and rainfall rate. The results show that the average raindrop spectra appear to be one-peak curves, the number concentration for larger drops increase significantly with rainfall rate, and its value over southern China is much higher, especially in convective rain. Standardized Gamma distributions better describe DSD for larger drops, especially for convective rain in southern China. All three Gamma parameters for stratiform precipitation over the Tibetan Plateau are much higher, while its shape parameter (μ) and mass-weighted mean diameter (D m), for convective precipitation, are less. In terms of parameter variation with rainfall rate, the normalized intercept parameter (N w) over the Tibetan Plateau for stratiform rain increases with rainfall rate, which is opposite to the situation in convective rain. The μ over the Tibetan Plateau for stratiform and convective precipitation types decreases with an increase in rainfall rate, which is opposite to the case for D m variation. In Z-R relationships, like "Z=ARb", the coefficient A over the Tibetan Plateau is smaller, while its b is higher, when the rain type transfers from stratiform to convective ones. Furthermore, with an increase in rainfall rate, parameters A and b over southern China increase gradually, while A over the Tibetan Plateau decreases substantially, which differs from the findings of previous studies. In terms of geographic location and climate over the Tibetan Plateau and southern China, the precipitation in the pre-flood seasons is dominated by strong convective rain, while weak convective rain occurs frequently in northern Tibet with lower humidity and higher altitude.

    Why Was the Strengthening of Rainfall in Summer over the Yangtze River Valley in 2016 Less Pronounced than that in 1998 under Similar Preceding El Niño Events?——Role of Midlatitude Circulation in August
    Chaofan LI,Wei CHEN,Xiaowei HONG,Riyu LU
    2017, 34 (11): 1290-1300.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-7003-8
    Abstract   ( 147 ) HTML   PDF (3854KB) (1769)

    It is widely recognized that rainfall over the Yangtze River valley (YRV) strengthens considerably during the decaying summer of El Niño, as demonstrated by the catastrophic flooding suffered in the summer of 1998. Nevertheless, the rainfall over the YRV in the summer of 2016 was much weaker than that in 1998, despite the intensity of the 2016 El Niño having been as strong as that in 1998. A thorough comparison of the YRV summer rainfall anomaly between 2016 and 1998 suggests that the difference was caused by the sub-seasonal variation in the YRV rainfall anomaly between these two years, principally in August. The precipitation anomaly was negative in August 2016——different to the positive anomaly of 1998. Further analysis suggests that the weaker YRV rainfall in August 2016 could be attributable to the distinct circulation anomalies over the midlatitudes. The intensified "Silk Road Pattern" and upper-tropospheric geopotential height over the Urals region, both at their strongest since 1980, resulted in an anticyclonic circulation anomaly over midlatitude East Asia with anomalous easterly flow over the middle-to-lower reaches of the YRV in the lower troposphere. This easterly flow reduced the climatological wind, weakened the water vapor transport, and induced the weaker YRV rainfall in August 2016, as compared to that in 1998. Given the unique sub-seasonal variation of the YRV rainfall in summer 2016, more attention should be paid to midlatitude circulation——besides the signal in the tropics——to further our understanding of the predictability and variation of YRV summer rainfall.

    Parallel Comparison of the 1982/83, 1997/98 and 2015/16 Super El Niños and Their Effects on the Extratropical Stratosphere
    Jian RAO,Rongcai REN
    2017, 34 (9): 1121-1133.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6260-x
    Abstract   ( 145 ) HTML   PDF (4949KB) (122)

    This study uses multiple sea surface temperature (SST) datasets to perform a parallel comparison of three super El Niños and their effects on the stratosphere. The results show that, different from ordinary El Niños, warm SST anomalies appear earliest in the western tropical Pacific and precede the super El Niño peak by more than 18 months. In the previous winter, relative to the mature phase of El Niño, as a precursor, North Pacific Oscillation-like circulation anomalies are observed. A Pacific-North America (PNA) teleconnection appears in the extratropical troposphere during the mature phase, in spite of the subtle differences between the intensities, as well as the zonal position, of the PNA lobes. Related to the negative rainfall response over the tropical Indian Ocean, the PNA teleconnection in the winter of 1997/98 is the strongest among the three super El Niños. The northern winter stratosphere shows large anomalies in the polar cap temperature and the circumpolar westerly, if the interferences from other factors are linearly filtered from the circulation data. Associated with the positive PNA response in a super El Niño winter, positive polar cap temperature anomalies and circumpolar easterly anomalies, though different in timing, are also observed in the mature winters of the three super El Niños. The stratospheric polar vortex in the next winter relative to the 1982/83 and 1997/98 events is also anomalously weaker and warmer, and the stratospheric circulation conditions remain to be seen in the coming winter following the mature phase of the 2015/16 event.

    Variable and Robust East Asian Monsoon Rainfall Response to El Niño over the Past 60 Years (1957-2016)
    Bin WANG,Juan LI,Qiong HE
    2017, 34 (10): 1235-1248.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-7016-3
    Abstract   ( 143 ) HTML   PDF (7271KB) (129)

    Severe flooding occurred in southern and northern China during the summer of 2016 when the 2015 super El Niño decayed to a normal condition. However, the mean precipitation during summer (June-July-August) 2016 does not show significant anomalies, suggesting that —— over East Asia (EA) —— seasonal mean anomalies have limited value in representing hydrological hazards. Scrutinizing season-evolving precipitation anomalies associated with 16 El Niño episodes during 1957-2016 reveals that, over EA, the spatiotemporal patterns among the four categories of El Niño events are quite variable, due to a large range of variability in the intensity and evolution of El Niño events and remarkable subseasonal migration of the rainfall anomalies. The only robust seasonal signal is the dry anomalies over central North China during the El Niño developing summer. Distinguishing strong and weak El Niño impacts is important. Only strong El Niño events can persistently enhance EA subtropical frontal precipitation from the peak season of El Niño to the ensuing summer, by stimulating intense interaction between the anomalous western Pacific anticyclone (WPAC) and underlying dipolar sea surface temperature anomalies in the Indo-Pacific warm pool, thereby maintaining the WPAC and leading to a prolonged El Niño impact on EA. A weak El Niño may also enhance the post-El Niño summer rainfall over EA, but through a different physical process: the WPAC re-emerges as a forced response to the rapid cooling in the eastern Pacific. The results suggest that the skillful prediction of rainfall over continental EA requires the accurate prediction of not only the strength and evolution of El Niño, but also the subseasonal migration of EA rainfall anomalies.

    Numerical Simulation of the Rapid Intensification of Hurricane Katrina (2005): Sensitivity to Boundary Layer Parameterization Schemes
    Jianjun LIU,Feimin ZHANG,Zhaoxia PU
    2017, 34 (4): 482-496.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-016-6209-5
    Abstract   ( 136 ) HTML   PDF (33172KB) (97)

    Accurate forecasting of the intensity changes of hurricanes is an important yet challenging problem in numerical weather prediction. The rapid intensification of Hurricane Katrina (2005) before its landfall in the southern US is studied with the Advanced Research version of the WRF (Weather Research and Forecasting) model. The sensitivity of numerical simulations to two popular planetary boundary layer (PBL) schemes, the Mellor-Yamada-Janjic (MYJ) and the Yonsei University (YSU) schemes, is investigated. It is found that, compared with the YSU simulation, the simulation with the MYJ scheme produces better track and intensity evolution, better vortex structure, and more accurate landfall time and location. Large discrepancies (e.g., over 10 hPa in simulated minimum sea level pressure) are found between the two simulations during the rapid intensification period. Further diagnosis indicates that stronger surface fluxes and vertical mixing in the PBL from the simulation with the MYJ scheme lead to enhanced air-sea interaction, which helps generate more realistic simulations of the rapid intensification process. Overall, the results from this study suggest that improved representation of surface fluxes and vertical mixing in the PBL is essential for accurate prediction of hurricane intensity changes.

    Modeling Aerosol Climate Effects over Monsoon Asia: A Collaborative Research Program
    Wei-Chyung WANG,Guoxing CHEN,Yangyang SONG
    2017, 34 (10): 1195-1203.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6319-8
    Abstract   ( 132 ) HTML   PDF (6181KB) (106)

    This paper describes the latest progress of a collaborative research program entitled "Modeling Aerosol Climate Effects over Monsoon Asia", under the Climate Sciences agreement between the U.S. Department of Energy and the Chinese Academy of Sciences (in the early 1980s, Professor Duzheng YE played a critical role in leading and formalizing the agreement). Here, the rationale and approach for pursuing the program, the participants, and research activities of recent years are first described, and then the highlights of the program's key findings and relevant scientific issues, as well as follow-up studies, are presented and discussed.

    Monitoring Carbon Dioxide from Space: Retrieval Algorithm and Flux Inversion Based on GOSAT Data and Using CarbonTracker-China
    Dongxu YANG, Huifang ZHANG, Yi LIU, Baozhang CHEN, Zhaonan CAI, Daren LÜ
    2017, 34 (8): 965-976.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6221-4
    Abstract   ( 130 ) HTML   PDF (6581KB) (122)

    Monitoring atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) from space-borne state-of-the-art hyperspectral instruments can provide a high precision global dataset to improve carbon flux estimation and reduce the uncertainty of climate projection. Here, we introduce a carbon flux inversion system for estimating carbon flux with satellite measurements under the support of "The Strategic Priority Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences——Climate Change: Carbon Budget and Relevant Issues". The carbon flux inversion system is composed of two separate parts: the Institute of Atmospheric Physics Carbon Dioxide Retrieval Algorithm for Satellite Remote Sensing (IAPCAS), and CarbonTracker-China (CT-China), developed at the Chinese Academy of Sciences. The Greenhouse gases Observing SATellite (GOSAT) measurements are used in the carbon flux inversion experiment. To improve the quality of the IAPCAS-GOSAT retrieval, we have developed a post-screening and bias correction method, resulting in 25%-30% of the data remaining after quality control. Based on these data, the seasonal variation of XCO2 (column-averaged CO2 dry-air mole fraction) is studied, and a strong relation with vegetation cover and population is identified. Then, the IAPCAS-GOSAT XCO2 product is used in carbon flux estimation by CT-China. The net ecosystem CO2 exchange is -0.34 Pg C yr-1 ( 0.08 Pg C yr-1), with a large error reduction of 84%, which is a significant improvement on the error reduction when compared with in situ-only inversion.

    A High-Order Spatiotemporal Precision-Matching Taylor-Li Scheme for Time-Dependent Problems
    Pengfei WANG
    2017, 34 (12): 1461-1471.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-7018-1
    Abstract   ( 127 ) HTML   PDF (578KB) (89)

    Based on the Taylor series method and Li's spatial differential method, a high-order hybrid Taylor-Li scheme is proposed. The results of a linear advection equation indicate that, using the initial values of the square-wave type, a result with third-order accuracy occurs. However, using initial values associated with the Gaussian function type, a result with very high precision appears. The study demonstrates that, when the order of the time integral is more than three, the corresponding optimal spatial difference order could be higher than six. The results indicate that the reason for why there is no improvement related to an order of spatial difference above six is the use of a time integral scheme that is not high enough. The author also proposes a recursive differential method to improve the Taylor-Li scheme's computation speed. A more rapid and high-precision program than direct computation of the high-order space differential item is employed, and the computation speed is dramatically boosted. Based on a multiple-precision library, the ultrahigh-order Taylor-Li scheme can be used to solve the advection equation and Burgers' equation.

    From Climate to Global Change: Following the Footprint of Prof. Duzheng YE's Research
    Congbin FU
    2017, 34 (10): 1159-1168.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6300-6
    Abstract   ( 123 ) HTML   PDF (3446KB) (127)

    To commemorate 100 years since the birth of Professor Duzheng YE, this paper reviews the contribution of Ye and his research team to the development from climate to global change science in the past 30 or so years, including: (1) the role of climate change in global change; (2) the critical time scales and predictability of global change; (3) the sensitive regions of global change——transitional zones of climate and ecosystems; and (4) orderly human activities and adaptation to global change, with a focus on the development of a proactive strategy for adaptation to such change.

    Interdecadal Variations of the South Asian Summer Monsoon Circulation Variability and the Associated Sea Surface Temperatures on Interannual Scales
    Ya GAO,Huijun WANG,Dong CHEN
    2017, 34 (7): 816-832.   DOI: 10.1007/ s00376-017-6246-8
    Abstract   ( 122 ) HTML   PDF (11087KB) (94)

    We investigate the interannual variability of the South Asian summer monsoon (SASM) circulation, which has experienced a significant interdecadal change since 2000. This change is primarily influenced by sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the tropical Pacific and North Atlantic oceans. During the pre-2000 period examined in this study (1979-99), the SASM is negatively correlated with eastern Pacific SSTs (the canonical ENSO mode) and positively correlated with the negative phase of the North Atlantic SST tripole (NAT). During the post-2000 period (2000-14), the SASM is negatively correlated with central Pacific SSTs and positively correlated with the positive phase of the NAT pattern. The associated Pacific SSTs change from the eastern to central region, leading to the rising (subsiding) branch of the Walker circulation moving westwards to the Maritime Continent in the latter period, which can impact the interannual variability of the SASM through modulating the wind field in the troposphere. In addition to Pacific SSTs, the NAT SSTs can propagate energy from the North Atlantic to the South Asian High (SAH) region through the wave activity flux, and then further impact the SASM via the SAH. Because the SASM is intimately related with precipitation over the Asian region, we briefly discuss the features of the precipitation patterns associated with the SASM during the two periods. The westward shifting Walker circulation leads to the shrinking and weakened anomalous westerlies of the SASM in the lower level, inducing the Maritime Continent rainfall location to move westwards and more moisture to arrive in southern China from the Pacific Ocean in the latter period.

    Grid-cell Aerosol Direct Shortwave Radiative Forcing Calculated Using the SBDART Model with MODIS and AERONET Observations: An Application in Winter and Summer in Eastern China
    Yunfei FU,Jiachen ZHU,Yuanjian YANG,Renmin YUAN,Guosheng LIU,Tao XIAN,Peng LIU
    2017, 34 (8): 952-964.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-017-6226-z
    Abstract   ( 120 ) HTML   PDF (3840KB) (140)

    Taking winter and summer in eastern China as an example application, a grid-cell method of aerosol direct radiative forcing (ADRF) calculation is examined using the Santa Barbara DISORT Atmospheric Radiative Transfer (SBDART) model with inputs from MODIS and AERONET observations and reanalysis data. Results show that there are significant seasonal and regional differences in climatological mean aerosol optical parameters and ADRF. Higher aerosol optical depth (AOD) occurs in summer and two prominent high aerosol loading centers are observed. Higher single scattering albedo (SSA) in summer is likely associated with the weak absorbing secondary aerosols. SSA is higher in North China during summer but higher in South China during winter. Aerosols induce negative forcing at the top of the atmosphere (TOA) and surface during both winter and summer, which may be responsible for the decrease in temperature and the increase in relative humidity. Values of ADRF at the surface are four times stronger than those at the TOA. Both AOD and ADRF present strong interannual variations; however, their amplitudes are larger in summer. Moreover, patterns and trends of ADRF do not always correspond well to those of AOD. Differences in the spatial distributions of ADRF between strong and weak monsoon years are captured effectively. Generally, the present results justify that to calculate grid-cell ADRF at a large scale using the SBDART model with observational aerosol optical properties and reanalysis data is an effective approach.

    The Quadrennial Ozone Symposium 2016
    2017, 34 (3): 283-288.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-016-6309-2
    Abstract   ( 118 ) HTML   PDF (489KB) (139)
    Air Temperature Estimation with MODIS Data over the Northern Tibetan Plateau
    Fangfang HUANG,Weiqiang MA,Binbin WANG,Zeyong HU,Yaoming MA,Genhou SUN,Zhipeng XIE,Yun LIN
    2017, 34 (5): 650-662.   DOI: 10.1007/s00376-016-6152-5
    Abstract   ( 117 ) HTML   PDF (35265KB) (110)

    Time series of MODIS land surface temperature (T s) and normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) products, combined with digital elevation model (DEM) and meteorological data from 2001 to 2012, were used to map the spatial distribution of monthly mean air temperature over the Northern Tibetan Plateau (NTP). A time series analysis and a regression analysis of monthly mean land surface temperature (T s) and air temperature (T a) were conducted using ordinary linear regression (OLR) and geographical weighted regression (GWR). The analyses showed that GWR, which considers MODIS T s, NDVI and elevation as independent variables, yielded much better results [R Adj2>0.79; root-mean-square error (RMSE) = 0.51°C-1.12°C] associated with estimating T a compared to those from OLR (R Adj2=0.40-0.78; RMSE = 1.60°C-4.38°C). In addition, some characteristics of the spatial distribution of monthly T a and the difference between the surface and air temperature (T d) are as follows. According to the analysis of the 0°C and 10°C isothermals, T a values over the NTP at elevations of 4000-5000 m were greater than 10°C in the summer (from May to October), and T a values at an elevation of 3200 m dropped below 0°C in the winter (from November to April). T a exhibited an increasing trend from northwest to southeast. Except in the southeastern area of the NTP, T d values in other areas were all larger than 0°C in the winter.

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