The Seesaw in Winter Temperatures between Greenland and Northern Europe. Part II: Some Oceanic and Atmospheric Effects in Middle and High Latitudes

Jefery C. Rogers Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research, University of Colorado. Boulder 80309

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Harry Van Loon National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO 80307

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Abstract

Description of the seesaw in wintertime climate between Greenland and northern Europe is continued in terms of variations in long waves, frequencies of highs and lows, zonal geostrophic winds, precipitation, sea ice and sea surface temperatures. The monthly variations in four circulation modes are described. Significant spatial correlations exist between the zonal. component of the geostrophic wind in the area of the strongest westerlies in the North Atlantic Ocean and the zonal geostrophic wind elsewhere north of 20°N in winter. Long waves 1 and 2 change substantially from one phase of the seesaw to the other at 63°N. At 45°N only wave 2 changes appreciably between phases.

Large, statisticaly significant anomalies occur during and after seesaw winters in the atmosphere-ocean-ice system of the North Atlantic Ocean and its periphery, as well as in the North Pacific Ocean. Anomalies of sea surface temperature which develop during seesaw winters tend to persist through the subsequent spring and summer. In addition, the seesaw modes are characterized by significantly different ice conditions in Davis Strait, near Newfoundland, and in the Baltic Sea in winter and during the following spring.

Abstract

Description of the seesaw in wintertime climate between Greenland and northern Europe is continued in terms of variations in long waves, frequencies of highs and lows, zonal geostrophic winds, precipitation, sea ice and sea surface temperatures. The monthly variations in four circulation modes are described. Significant spatial correlations exist between the zonal. component of the geostrophic wind in the area of the strongest westerlies in the North Atlantic Ocean and the zonal geostrophic wind elsewhere north of 20°N in winter. Long waves 1 and 2 change substantially from one phase of the seesaw to the other at 63°N. At 45°N only wave 2 changes appreciably between phases.

Large, statisticaly significant anomalies occur during and after seesaw winters in the atmosphere-ocean-ice system of the North Atlantic Ocean and its periphery, as well as in the North Pacific Ocean. Anomalies of sea surface temperature which develop during seesaw winters tend to persist through the subsequent spring and summer. In addition, the seesaw modes are characterized by significantly different ice conditions in Davis Strait, near Newfoundland, and in the Baltic Sea in winter and during the following spring.

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