Time Variation of Tropical Energetics as Viewed from a Geostationary Altitude

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  • 1 Space Science and Engineering Center, The University of Wisconsin, Madison
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Abstract

In this paper we have used time-lapse ATS-I satellite cloud photographs as our data source for the evaluation of the convective transport of latent heat from the lower troposphere to the tropical upper troposphere.

The analysis reveals that the meso- to subsynoptic-scale convection systems over the tropical mid-Pacific are well organized on a time scale of a few days and are controlled by the large-scale motion field. The time variation of this beat transport, in the sector 12OW–18OW, 15N–15S, indicates an approximate periodicity of five days. Furthermore, this pulsating feature seems to be tied to a wave-like disturbance field of wavelength nearly 75° of longitude and moving westward with an approximate speed of 15° of longitude per day.

Abstract

In this paper we have used time-lapse ATS-I satellite cloud photographs as our data source for the evaluation of the convective transport of latent heat from the lower troposphere to the tropical upper troposphere.

The analysis reveals that the meso- to subsynoptic-scale convection systems over the tropical mid-Pacific are well organized on a time scale of a few days and are controlled by the large-scale motion field. The time variation of this beat transport, in the sector 12OW–18OW, 15N–15S, indicates an approximate periodicity of five days. Furthermore, this pulsating feature seems to be tied to a wave-like disturbance field of wavelength nearly 75° of longitude and moving westward with an approximate speed of 15° of longitude per day.

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