Relationship between Boreal Summer Circulation Trend and Destructive Stationary-Transient Wave Interference in the Western Hemisphere

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  • 1 Department of Meteorology and Atmospheric Science, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania
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Abstract

This study examines the role of the latent heating in exciting the upper-level circulation anomaly which destructively interferes with the climatological stationary wave in the Western Hemisphere during boreal summer. This destructive interference pattern closely resembles the circulation trend which is known to be responsible for surface heat extreme trends. To investigate the mechanism behind this circulation anomaly, daily stationary-transient wave interference and related meteorological variables are analyzed using reanalysis data for the period of 1979-2017. Numerical model simulations forced by reanalysis heating anomalies indicate that the destructive interference pattern is most effectively excited by latent heating anomalies over the North Pacific and eastern Canada. The North Pacific heating anomaly drives circulation anomalies that not only resemble the destructive interference pattern, but also transport moisture into eastern Canada. The resulting latent heating over eastern Canada drives circulation that further reinforces the destructive interference pattern which includes a prominent high pressure system over Greenland. Tropical heating also plays a role in driving the destructive interference pattern. On intraseasonal time scales, the destructive interference pattern is preceded by suppressed Indo-western Pacific heating and enhanced North American monsoon heating. On decadal time scales, both heating centers have strengthened, but the trend of the North American monsoon heating was greater than that of the Indo-Western Pacific heating. These uneven heating trends help explain the resemblance between the destructive interference pattern and the circulation trend over the Western Hemisphere.

Corresponding author address: Dong Wan Kim, Department of Meteorology and Atmospheric Science, Walker Building 407, University Park, PA, 16802. Corresponding author email: dxk582@psu.edu

Abstract

This study examines the role of the latent heating in exciting the upper-level circulation anomaly which destructively interferes with the climatological stationary wave in the Western Hemisphere during boreal summer. This destructive interference pattern closely resembles the circulation trend which is known to be responsible for surface heat extreme trends. To investigate the mechanism behind this circulation anomaly, daily stationary-transient wave interference and related meteorological variables are analyzed using reanalysis data for the period of 1979-2017. Numerical model simulations forced by reanalysis heating anomalies indicate that the destructive interference pattern is most effectively excited by latent heating anomalies over the North Pacific and eastern Canada. The North Pacific heating anomaly drives circulation anomalies that not only resemble the destructive interference pattern, but also transport moisture into eastern Canada. The resulting latent heating over eastern Canada drives circulation that further reinforces the destructive interference pattern which includes a prominent high pressure system over Greenland. Tropical heating also plays a role in driving the destructive interference pattern. On intraseasonal time scales, the destructive interference pattern is preceded by suppressed Indo-western Pacific heating and enhanced North American monsoon heating. On decadal time scales, both heating centers have strengthened, but the trend of the North American monsoon heating was greater than that of the Indo-Western Pacific heating. These uneven heating trends help explain the resemblance between the destructive interference pattern and the circulation trend over the Western Hemisphere.

Corresponding author address: Dong Wan Kim, Department of Meteorology and Atmospheric Science, Walker Building 407, University Park, PA, 16802. Corresponding author email: dxk582@psu.edu
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