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C. S. Ramage

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C. S. Ramage

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A new Comprehensive Ocean-Atmosphere Data Set for the period 1854–1979 will soon become available for studies of secular climate changes in ocean surface heat flux. Of the observed variables from which heat flux is calculated, wind speed and sea surface temperature have undergone indeterminate spurious changes due to modifications in estimating and measuring.

Analysis of a summertime ocean data set for the Philippine Sea revealed unacceptably large increases in air temperature and dew point readings resulting from daytime heating of the ship. Differences between ocean skin temperatures and subsurface temperatures lead to positive heat flux errors with light winds. Computing heat fluxes for individual ship reports and then averaging them improves matters.

These errors, as well as those arising from spatial and temporal inhomogeneities of individual monthly averages, require that studies of ocean climate change first be confined to the most heavily traveled ship routes. Criteria of consistency, pattern persistence and physical reasonableness would need to be satisfied before one could accept evidence of secular changes in surface heat flux.

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C. S. Ramage

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In October 1970 the South China Sea experienced three typhoons. Meteorological and oceanographic data were examined in an attempt to explain why the typhoons underwent intensity changes while over the South China Sea. The clearest relationship was found with troughs in the upper tropospheric westerlies—intensification accompanied development of a middle and high cloud plume streaming northeastward from the storm area.

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C. S. Ramage

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C. S. Ramage

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Opinions differ on the nature of near-equatorial troughs and their associated weather. Two research aircraft traversed a South Indian Ocean near-equatorial trough on 2 February 1964. Their detailed observations support earlier, large-scale studies which postulated that trough lines above 5° latitude coincide with maximum sea-surface temperature and relatively fine weather.

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C. S. Ramage

Five-day means show that over south China there are certain persistent variations in the march of rainfall during the wet season (March–November). These are explained in terms of seasonal meteorological trends in the surrounding regions. The view is advanced, supported by an ancient Chinese farmers' calendar, that the rainfall pattern of south China has changed little in the past 2000 years.

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C. S. Ramage

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C. S. Ramage

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Latest available compilations confirm that mean hurricane frequencies vary widely within the tropics. Referred to a standard unit area, hurricanes (typhoons) are three times as likely to develop in the western North Pacific as in any other generating area.

Numerous published analyses indicate that an intensifying upper trough in low latitudes may, through an energy dispersion mechanism, sharpen the next downstream trough. The resultant pressure fall in the downstream trough, should it overlie a low-level cyclonic disturbance, might be enough to trigger hurricane development in the disturbance.

Frequent energy dispersion from a vigorous persistent upper trough in the central North Pacific could account for the high frequency of west Pacific typhoons.

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C. S. RAMAGE

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Thunderstorm frequency and amount of moisture above 500 mb. both indicate that the equatorial regions of South America and Africa and the “maritime continent” of Indonesia and the Carolines generate a much greater amount of heat for export than do equatorial oceanic regions.

Over the maritime continent in January 1963, heat generated from excessive rains was efficiently transported northward and through conversion of potential to kinetic energy proably helped maintain an intense subtropical jet stream. In January 1964 drought over the maritime continent was accompained by a relative accumulation of heat in the upper troposphere, associated with inefficient poleward transport, and a much weaker circulation. Most winters over the western Pacific and southeast Asia fluctuate between situations typical of January 1963 and January 1964.

Since the troposphere over the maritime continent in winter is probably the single greatest source of energy for the extratropical circulation, the proposed Marshall Island experiment should be modified to include Indonesia and be rescheduled to include winter.

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C. S. Ramage

Abstract

No Abstract Available

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