Dependence of Simulation of Boreal Summer Tropical Intraseasonal Oscillations on the Simulation of Seasonal Mean

R. S. Ajayamohan FRCGC, Japan Agency for Marine–Earth Science and Technology, Yokohama, Japan

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B. N. Goswami Centre for Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India

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Abstract

The link between realism in simulation of the seasonal mean precipitation and summer tropical intraseasonal oscillations and their dependence on cumulus parameterization schemes is investigated using the Florida State University Global Spectral Model (FSUGSM). Forty-member model ensemble simulations of the northern summer season are generated for three different cumulus parameterization schemes [namely, Arakawa–Schubert (Naval Research Laboratory; NRL), Zhang and McFarlane (National Center for Atmospheric Research; NCAR), and Emanuel (Massachusetts Institute of Technology; MIT)]. The MIT scheme simulates the regional pattern of seasonal mean precipitation over the Indian monsoon region well but has large systematic bias in simulating the precipitation over the western Pacific and the Maritime Continent. Although the simulation of details of regional distribution of precipitation over the Indian monsoon region by the NRL and NCAR schemes is not accurate, they simulate the spatial pattern of precipitation over the tropical Indo–Pacific domain closer to observation. The NRL scheme seems to captures the observed northward and eastward propagation of intraseasonal precipitation anomalies realistically. However, the simulations of the NCAR and MIT schemes are dominated by a westward propagating component. The westward propagating mode seen in the model as well as observations is indicated to be an equatorial Rossby wave modified by the northern summer mean flow. An examination of the relationship between simulation of the model climatology and eastward propagating character of monsoon intraseasonal oscillations (ISOs) in a limited sample shows that the scheme that simulates better seasonal mean pattern of rainfall over the tropical Indo–Pacific domain also simulates better intraseasonal variance and more realistic eastward propagation of monsoon ISOs. Among the parameters known to be important for meridional propagation of the summer monsoon ISOs, the meridional gradient of mean humidity in the lower atmosphere seems to be crucial in determining the northward propagation in the equatorial Indian Ocean (between 10°S and 10°N). For better prediction of the seasonal mean Indian monsoon, therefore, the model climatology should have minimum bias not only over the Indian monsoon region but also over the entire Indo–Pacific basin.

* Previous affiliation: Center for Ocean–Atmospheric Prediction Studies, The Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida

Corresponding author address: R. S. Ajayamohan, Frontier Research Center for Global Change, JAMSTEC, Yokohama 2360001, Japan. Email: ajayan@jamstec.go.jp

Abstract

The link between realism in simulation of the seasonal mean precipitation and summer tropical intraseasonal oscillations and their dependence on cumulus parameterization schemes is investigated using the Florida State University Global Spectral Model (FSUGSM). Forty-member model ensemble simulations of the northern summer season are generated for three different cumulus parameterization schemes [namely, Arakawa–Schubert (Naval Research Laboratory; NRL), Zhang and McFarlane (National Center for Atmospheric Research; NCAR), and Emanuel (Massachusetts Institute of Technology; MIT)]. The MIT scheme simulates the regional pattern of seasonal mean precipitation over the Indian monsoon region well but has large systematic bias in simulating the precipitation over the western Pacific and the Maritime Continent. Although the simulation of details of regional distribution of precipitation over the Indian monsoon region by the NRL and NCAR schemes is not accurate, they simulate the spatial pattern of precipitation over the tropical Indo–Pacific domain closer to observation. The NRL scheme seems to captures the observed northward and eastward propagation of intraseasonal precipitation anomalies realistically. However, the simulations of the NCAR and MIT schemes are dominated by a westward propagating component. The westward propagating mode seen in the model as well as observations is indicated to be an equatorial Rossby wave modified by the northern summer mean flow. An examination of the relationship between simulation of the model climatology and eastward propagating character of monsoon intraseasonal oscillations (ISOs) in a limited sample shows that the scheme that simulates better seasonal mean pattern of rainfall over the tropical Indo–Pacific domain also simulates better intraseasonal variance and more realistic eastward propagation of monsoon ISOs. Among the parameters known to be important for meridional propagation of the summer monsoon ISOs, the meridional gradient of mean humidity in the lower atmosphere seems to be crucial in determining the northward propagation in the equatorial Indian Ocean (between 10°S and 10°N). For better prediction of the seasonal mean Indian monsoon, therefore, the model climatology should have minimum bias not only over the Indian monsoon region but also over the entire Indo–Pacific basin.

* Previous affiliation: Center for Ocean–Atmospheric Prediction Studies, The Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida

Corresponding author address: R. S. Ajayamohan, Frontier Research Center for Global Change, JAMSTEC, Yokohama 2360001, Japan. Email: ajayan@jamstec.go.jp

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