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Ricardo M. Domingues, William E. Johns, and Christopher S. Meinen

Abstract

In this study, mechanisms causing year-to-year changes in the Florida Current seasonality are investigated using controlled realistic numerical experiments designed to isolate the western boundary responses to westward-propagating open ocean signals. The experiments reveal two distinct processes by which westward-propagating signals can modulate the phase of the Florida Current variability, which we refer to as the “direct” and “indirect” response mechanisms. The direct response mechanism involves a two-stage response to open ocean anticyclonic eddies characterized by the direct influence of Rossby wave barotropic anomalies and baroclinic wall jets that propagate through Northwest Providence Channel. In the indirect response mechanism, open ocean signals act as small perturbations to the stochastic Gulf Stream variability downstream, which are then transmitted upstream to the Florida Straits through baroclinic coastally trapped signals that can rapidly travel along the U.S. East Coast. Experiments indicate that westward-propagating eddies play a key role in modulating the phase of the Florida Current variability, but not the amplitude, which is determined by its intrinsic variability in our simulations. Results from this study further suggest that the Antilles Current may act as a semipermeable barrier to incoming signals, favoring the interaction through the indirect response mechanism. The mechanisms reported here can be potentially linked to year-to-year changes in the seasonality of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation and may also be present in other western boundary current systems.

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Jili Dong, Ricardo Domingues, Gustavo Goni, George Halliwell, Hyun-Sook Kim, Sang-Ki Lee, Michael Mehari, Francis Bringas, Julio Morell, and Luis Pomales

Abstract

The initialization of ocean conditions is essential to coupled tropical cyclone (TC) forecasts. This study investigates the impact of ocean observation assimilation, particularly underwater glider data, on high-resolution coupled TC forecasts. Using the coupled Hurricane Weather Research and Forecasting (HWRF) Model–Hybrid Coordinate Ocean Model (HYCOM) system, numerical experiments are performed by assimilating underwater glider observations alone and with other standard ocean observations for the forecast of Hurricane Gonzalo (2014). The glider observations are able to provide valuable information on subsurface ocean thermal and saline structure, even with their limited spatial coverage along the storm track and the relatively small amount of data assimilated. Through the assimilation of underwater glider observations, the prestorm thermal and saline structures of initial upper-ocean conditions are significantly improved near the location of glider observations, though the impact is localized because of the limited coverage of glider data. The ocean initial conditions are best represented when both the standard ocean observations and the underwater glider data are assimilated together. The barrier layer and the associated sharp density gradient in the upper ocean are successfully represented in the ocean initial conditions only with the use of underwater glider observations. The upper-ocean temperature and salinity forecasts in the first 48 h are improved by assimilating both underwater glider and standard ocean observations. The assimilation of glider observations alone does not make a large impact on the intensity forecast due to their limited coverage along the storm track. The 126-h intensity forecast of Hurricane Gonzalo is improved moderately through assimilating both underwater glider data and standard ocean observations.

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Ricardo Domingues, Matthieu Le Hénaff, George Halliwell, Jun A. Zhang, Francis Bringas, Patricia Chardon, Hyun-Sook Kim, Julio Morell, and Gustavo Goni

Abstract

Major Atlantic hurricanes Irma, Jose, and Maria of 2017 reached their peak intensity in September while traveling over the tropical North Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea, where both atmospheric and ocean conditions were favorable for intensification. In situ and satellite ocean observations revealed that conditions in these areas exhibited (i) sea surface temperatures above 28°C, (ii) upper-ocean heat content above 60 kJ cm−2, and (iii) the presence of low-salinity barrier layers associated with a larger-than-usual extension of the Amazon and Orinoco riverine plumes. Proof-of-concept coupled ocean–hurricane numerical model experiments demonstrated that the accurate representation of such ocean conditions led to an improvement in the simulated intensity of Hurricane Maria for the 3 days preceding landfall in Puerto Rico, when compared to an experiment without the assimilation of ocean observations. Without the assimilation of ocean observations, upper-ocean thermal conditions were generally colder than observations, resulting in reduced air–sea enthalpy fluxes—enthalpy fluxes are more realistically simulated when the upper-ocean temperature and salinity structure is better represented in the model. Our results further showed that different components of the ocean observing system provide valuable information in support of improved TC simulations, and that assimilation of underwater glider observations alone enabled the largest improvement over the 24 h time frame before landfall. Our results, therefore, indicated that ocean conditions were relevant for more realistically simulating Hurricane Maria’s intensity. However, further research based on a comprehensive set of hurricane cases is required to confirm robust improvements to forecast systems.

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Sameh A. Abou Rafee, Edmilson D. Freitas, Jorge A. Martins, Leila D. Martins, Leonardo M. Domingues, Janaína M. P. Nascimento, Carolyne B. Machado, Eliane B. Santos, Anderson P. Rudke, Thais Fujita, Rodrigo A. F. Souza, Ricardo Hallak, and Cintia B. Uvo

Abstract

This work presents an analysis of the observed trends in extreme precipitation events in the Paraná River basin (PRB) from 1977 to 2016 (40 yr) based on daily records from 853 stations. The Mann–Kendall test and inverse-distance-weighted interpolation were applied to annual and seasonal precipitation and also for four extreme precipitation indices. The results show that the negative trends (significance at 95% confidence level) in annual and seasonal series are mainly located in the northern and northeastern parts of the basin. In contrast, except in the autumn season, positive trends were concentrated in the southern and southeastern regions of the basin, most notably for annual and summer precipitation. The spatial distributions of the indices of annual maximum 5-day precipitation and number of rainstorms indicate that significant positive trends are mostly located in the south-southeast part of the basin and that significant negative trends are mostly located in the north-northeast part. The index of the annual number of dry days shows that 88% of significant trends are positive and that most of these are located in the northern region of the PRB, which is a region with a high number of consecutive dry days (>90). The simple daily intensity index showed the highest number of stations (263) with mostly positive significant trends.

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Stephen Baxter, Gerald D Bell, Eric S Blake, Francis G Bringas, Suzana J Camargo, Lin Chen, Caio A. S Coelho, Ricardo Domingues, Stanley B Goldenberg, Gustavo Goni, Nicolas Fauchereau, Michael S Halpert, Qiong He, Philip J Klotzbach, John A Knaff, Michelle L'Heureux, Chris W Landsea, I.-I Lin, Andrew M Lorrey, Jing-Jia Luo, Andrew D Magee, Richard J Pasch, Petra R Pearce, Alexandre B Pezza, Matthew Rosencrans, Blair C Trewin, Ryan E Truchelut, Bin Wang, H Wang, Kimberly M Wood, and John-Mark Woolley
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Howard J. Diamond, Carl J. Schreck III, Emily J. Becker, Gerald D. Bell, Eric S. Blake, Stephanie Bond, Francis G. Bringas, Suzana J. Camargo, Lin Chen, Caio A. S. Coelho, Ricardo Domingues, Stanley B. Goldenberg, Gustavo Goni, Nicolas Fauchereau, Michael S. Halpert, Qiong He, Philip J. Klotzbach, John A. Knaff, Michelle L'Heureux, Chris W. Landsea, I.-I. Lin, Andrew M. Lorrey, Jing-Jia Luo, Kyle MacRitchie, Andrew D. Magee, Ben Noll, Richard J. Pasch, Alexandre B. Pezza, Matthew Rosencrans, Michael K. Tippet, Blair C. Trewin, Ryan E. Truchelut, Bin Wang, Hui Wang, Kimberly M. Wood, John-Mark Woolley, and Steven H. Young
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Gregory C. Johnson, Rick Lumpkin, Simone R. Alin, Dillon J. Amaya, Molly O. Baringer, Tim Boyer, Peter Brandt, Brendan R. Carter, Ivona Cetinić, Don P. Chambers, Lijing Cheng, Andrew U. Collins, Cathy Cosca, Ricardo Domingues, Shenfu Dong, Richard A. Feely, Eleanor Frajka-Williams, Bryan A. Franz, John Gilson, Gustavo Goni, Benjamin D. Hamlington, Josefine Herrford, Zeng-Zhen Hu, Boyin Huang, Masayoshi Ishii, Svetlana Jevrejeva, John J. Kennedy, Marion Kersalé, Rachel E. Killick, Peter Landschützer, Matthias Lankhorst, Eric Leuliette, Ricardo Locarnini, John M. Lyman, John J. Marra, Christopher S. Meinen, Mark A. Merrifield, Gary T. Mitchum, Ben I. Moat, R. Steven Nerem, Renellys C. Perez, Sarah G. Purkey, James Reagan, Alejandra Sanchez-Franks, Hillary A. Scannell, Claudia Schmid, Joel P. Scott, David A. Siegel, David A. Smeed, Paul W. Stackhouse, William Sweet, Philip R. Thompson, Joaquin A. Triñanes, Denis L. Volkov, Rik Wanninkhof, Robert A. Weller, Caihong Wen, Toby K. Westberry, Matthew J. Widlansky, Anne C. Wilber, Lisan Yu, and Huai-Min Zhang
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Molly Baringer, Mariana B. Bif, Tim Boyer, Seth M. Bushinsky, Brendan R. Carter, Ivona Cetinić, Don P. Chambers, Lijing Cheng, Sanai Chiba, Minhan Dai, Catia M. Domingues, Shenfu Dong, Andrea J. Fassbender, Richard A. Feely, Eleanor Frajka-Williams, Bryan A. Franz, John Gilson, Gustavo Goni, Benjamin D. Hamlington, Zeng-Zhen Hu, Boyin Huang, Masayoshi Ishii, Svetlana Jevrejeva, William E. Johns, Gregory C. Johnson, Kenneth S. Johnson, John Kennedy, Marion Kersalé, Rachel E. Killick, Peter Landschützer, Matthias Lankhorst, Tong Lee, Eric Leuliette, Feili Li, Eric Lindstrom, Ricardo Locarnini, Susan Lozier, John M. Lyman, John J. Marra, Christopher S. Meinen, Mark A. Merrifield, Gary T. Mitchum, Ben Moat, Didier Monselesan, R. Steven Nerem, Renellys C. Perez, Sarah G. Purkey, Darren Rayner, James Reagan, Nicholas Rome, Alejandra Sanchez-Franks, Claudia Schmid, Joel P. Scott, Uwe Send, David A. Siegel, David A. Smeed, Sabrina Speich, Paul W. Stackhouse Jr., William Sweet, Yuichiro Takeshita, Philip R. Thompson, Joaquin A. Triñanes, Martin Visbeck, Denis L. Volkov, Rik Wanninkhof, Robert A. Weller, Toby K. Westberry, Matthew J. Widlansky, Susan E. Wijffels, Anne C. Wilber, Lisan Yu, Weidong Yu, and Huai-Min Zhang
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