Search Results

You are looking at 1 - 10 of 24 items for

  • Author or Editor: Sang-Wook Yeh x
  • Refine by Access: All Content x
Clear All Modify Search
Jinhee Yoon and Sang-Wook Yeh

Abstract

The influence of the Pacific decadal oscillation (PDO) on the relationship between El Niño and the northeast Asian summer monsoon (NEASM) is examined using observational datasets for the period of 1979–2007. When El Niño occurs during the boreal winter (December–February), the amount of rainfall over northeast Asia is usually above normal during the following summer (June–August). This relationship between El Niño and the NEASM is intensified when El Niño and the PDO are in phase during the previous winter. However, when El Niño and the PDO are out of phase, the relationship is weakened. The authors argue that the PDO can constructively or destructively interfere with the summer rainfall response over northeast Asia to El Niño.

They follow the hypothesis that the summer rainfall over northeast Asia could be separated into two components, that is, the tropics-related component and the extratropics-related component. Then they argue that the PDO could modulate the relationship between El Niño and the NEASM through changes in the extratropics-related rainfall, which is associated with the atmospheric circulation, such as the Eurasian pattern. The conditional composites show that when El Niño and the PDO are in phase, the Eurasian-like pattern acts to enhance the extratropics-related rainfall over northeast Asia, resulting in the strengthening of the NEASM. In contrast, the Eurasian-like pattern acts to reduce the extratropics-related rainfall when El Niño and the PDO are out of phase, resulting in the weakening of the NEASM.

Full access
Sang-Wook Yeh and Ben P. Kirtman

Abstract

The low-frequency relationship between interannual tropical and North Pacific sea surface temperature anomalies (SSTAs) in observations and a coupled general circulation model (CGCM) is investigated. The authors use the interactive ensemble CGCM, which advances a new approach for artificially increasing the signal-to-noise ratio, making it easier to detect physical and dynamical links with much reduced interference by atmospheric noise. The results presented here suggest that decadal variations in the relationship between the dominant modes of tropical and North Pacific interannual SSTA variability result from changes of spatial manifestation of North Pacific SSTA, both in the observation and in the model.

The authors conjecture that the details of tropical Pacific SST forcing ultimately determine the tropical–North Pacific SST teleconnections, and this conjecture is examined in a much longer time series from a CGCM simulation. There are two patterns of North Pacific interannual SSTA variability in the model. The first pattern is locally forced by noise in the surface air–sea fluxes associated due to internal atmospheric dynamics. The second pattern is remotely forced by tropical SSTA. As the relationship of tropical–North Pacific SST teleconnections varies in the model, the spatial manifestation of the North Pacific SSTA changes from the atmospheric noise-forced pattern to the remotely forced pattern and vice versa. In the model, the amplitude of the tropical Pacific SSTA variance varies on decadal time scales and this largely determines the dominant structure of North Pacific SSTA variability. Furthermore, the change in location of the maximum tropical SST forcing is associated with the changes in the spatial manifestation of North Pacific interannual SSTA variability.

Full access
Sang-Wook Yeh and Ben P. Kirtman

Abstract

The interactive ensemble coupling strategy has been developed specifically to determine how noise due to internal atmosphere dynamics impacts climate variability within the context of coupled general circulation models (CGCMs). In this study the authors investigate the impact of internal atmospheric variability on the ENSO variability using four CGCM simulations. In the control simulation, the interactive ensemble strategy is applied globally, thereby reducing the noise at the air–sea interface at each ocean grid point. In the second and third CGCM simulations, the interactive ensemble strategy is applied locally in the extratropics versus the tropics only, respectively. In addition, those results were compared with a standard CGCM.

The results suggest that tropical internal atmospheric variability strengthens the interannual-to-decadal ENSO variability and leads to a broader spectral peak. However, the noise due to internal atmospheric dynamics plays different roles when the interannual and decadal ENSO variability is considered separately. There are noise-induced changes in the SST–zonal wind stress feedbacks from interannual to decadal time scales. The tropical atmospheric internal variability largely modifies the frequency as opposed to the amplitude of the ENSO variability on interannual time scales. In contrast, tropical internal atmospheric variability is effective in forcing decadal ENSO variability, resulting in a significant decrease of decadal ENSO amplitude in the central tropical Pacific in a CGCM when the noise is reduced. The authors argue that the decadal ENSO variability is directly affected by the low-frequency noise over the western part of the tropical Pacific in a linear sense. On the other hand, the impact of extratropical atmospheric noise on the ENSO variability is weaker than the noise in the tropics.

Full access
Sang-Wook Yeh and Ben P. Kirtman

Abstract

Four climate system models are chosen here for an analysis of ENSO amplitude changes in 4 × CO2 climate change projections. Despite the large changes in the tropical Pacific mean state, the changes in ENSO amplitude are highly model dependant. To investigate why similar mean state changes lead to very different ENSO amplitude changes, the characteristics of sea surface temperature anomaly (SSTA) variability simulated in two coupled general circulation models (CGCMs) are analyzed: the Meteorological Research Institute (MRI) and Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) models. The skewed distribution of tropical Pacific SSTA simulated in the MRI model suggests the importance of nonlinearities in the ENSO physics, whereas the GFDL model lies in the linear regime. Consistent with these differences in ENSO regime, the GFDL model is insensitive to the mean state changes, whereas the MRI model is sensitive to the mean state changes associated with the 4 × CO2 scenario. Similarly, the low-frequency modulation of ENSO amplitude in the GFDL model is related to atmospheric stochastic forcing, but in the MRI model the amplitude modulation is insensitive to the noise forcing. These results suggest that the understanding of changes in ENSO statistics among various climate change projections is highly dependent on whether the model ENSO is in the linear or nonlinear regime.

Full access
Se-Yong Song, Sang-Wook Yeh, and Jae-Heung Park

Abstract

A composite analysis was conducted on the reanalysis dataset for 1979–2016, along with an idealized model experiment to show that the relationship between the East Asian jet stream (EAJS) and the East Asian winter monsoon (EAWM) is nonstationary. The relationship between EAWM and the EAJS weakened during the late 1990s. This decadal change in the EAJS–EAWM relationship was mainly due to a change in the secondary circulation across the EAJS between two contrasting periods, induced by the northward shift of the EAJS. A possible mechanism associated with the decadal change in meridional displacement of the EAJS is proposed. The enhanced convective activity in the western tropical Pacific after the late 1990s results in stronger Hadley circulation that could have contributed to the northward displacement of the Hadley circulation boundary latitude. Subsequently, this leads to the northward shift of the EAJS. Therefore, it is necessary to define a new EAJS index to account for the EAWM variability based on the change in the oceanic and atmospheric mean state across the late 1990s.

Full access
Sang-Wook Yeh, Xin Wang, Chunzai Wang, and Boris Dewitte

Abstract

This study examined connections between the North Pacific climate variability and occurrence of the central Pacific (CP) El Niño for the period from 1950 to 2012. A composite analysis indicated that the relationship between the North Pacific sea surface temperature (SST), along with its overlying atmospheric circulation, and the CP El Niño during the developing and mature phases was changed when the occurrence frequency of the CP El Niño significantly increased after 1990. Empirical orthogonal function (EOF) and singular value decomposition (SVD) analyses of variability in the tropical Pacific and its relationship to the North Pacific show that the North Pacific anomalous SST and the atmospheric variability are more closely associated with the occurrence of the CP El Niño after 1990 than before 1990. There were noticeable differences in terms of the atmospheric variability conditions over the North Pacific, such as the North Pacific Oscillation (NPO)-like atmospheric variability during the spring and its associated SST anomalies during the following winter before 1990 and after 1990. In addition, combined EOF analysis also indicated that the NPO-like atmospheric circulation becomes more effective at playing a role in initiating El Niño after 1990. Consequently, such a change might have been associated with the frequent occurrence of the CP El Niño after 1990.

Full access
Se-Yong Song, Sang-Wook Yeh, and Hyun-Su Jo

Abstract

The leading modes of the North Pacific jet (NPJ) variability include intensity changes and meridional shifts in jet position on low-frequency time scales. These leading modes of NPJ variability are closely associated with weather and climate conditions spanning from Asia to the United States. In this study, we investigated changes in the NPJ’s role as a conduit for U.S. surface air temperature (SAT) anomalies during the boreal winter across the late 1990s. We found that the leading mode of NPJ variability changed from the NPJ intensity changes to meridional shifts in NPJ position across the late 1990s. It leads to the change in the role of the NPJ as a conduit for U.S. SAT anomalies. Before the late 1990s, the variability of NPJ intensity significantly impacted western U.S. SAT anomalies related to the anomalous surface cyclonic circulation over the North Pacific. After the late 1990s, however, the variability of the NPJ’s meridional shift significantly influenced the eastern U.S. SAT anomalies in association with the anomalous surface cyclonic circulation over the northern North Pacific. Further analysis and model experiments revealed that the western to central North Pacific Ocean has been warming since the late 1990s and modulates atmospheric baroclinicity. This phenomenon mainly leads to a northward NPJ shift and implies that the eddy-driven mechanism on the NPJ’s formation, which acts to enhance the meridional variability of NPJ position, becomes dominant. We conclude that this northward shift of NPJ could have contributed to enhancing the NPJ’s meridional shift variability, significantly influencing the eastern U.S. SAT anomalies since the late 1990s.

Restricted access
Sang-Wook Yeh, Yoo-Geun Ham, and June-Yi Lee

Abstract

This study assesses the changes in the tropical Pacific Ocean sea surface temperature (SST) trend and ENSO amplitude by comparing a historical run of the World Climate Research Programme Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP) phase-5 multimodel ensemble dataset (CMIP5) and the CMIP phase-3 dataset (CMIP3). The results indicate that the magnitude of the SST trend in the tropical Pacific basin has been significantly reduced from CMIP3 to CMIP5, which may be associated with the overestimation of the response to natural forcing and aerosols by including Earth system models in CMIP5. Moreover, the patterns of tropical warming over the second half of the twentieth century have changed from a La Niña–like structure in CMIP3 to an El Niño–like structure in CMIP5. Further analysis indicates that such changes in the background state of the tropical Pacific and an increase in the sensitivity of the atmospheric response to the SST changes in the eastern tropical Pacific have influenced the ENSO properties. In particular, the ratio of the SST anomaly variance in the eastern and western tropical Pacific increased from CMIP3 to CMIP5, indicating that a center of action associated with the ENSO amplitude has shifted to the east.

Full access
Jung-Eun Kim, Sang-Wook Yeh, and Song-You Hong

Abstract

The characteristics of a strong northeast Asian summer monsoon (NEASM) with and without (A and B type, respectively) a basinwide warming in the Indian Ocean during the preceding winter are examined for the period of 1979–2006. In the case of the A type, strong El Niño–like sea surface temperature (SST) decays very rapidly from the preceding winter (December–February) to the following summer (June–August), which may be due to a feedback process of the warm Indian Ocean. In addition, the A-type strong NEASM is more associated with a weak western North Pacific summer monsoon than the B-type strong NEASM. On the other hand, for the B type an El Niño–like SST during the preceding winter is a persistent influence into the following summer. A striking difference can be found in the atmospheric teleconnection pattern from the tropics to the midlatitudes over the Indo-Pacific region, that is, the Pacific–Japan-like pattern versus a pronounced Rossby wave train pattern. This may result from the difference in location of the maximum center of rainfall anomalies over the tropical northwestern Pacific between the two types of strong NEASM. The authors argue that Indian Ocean basin warming plays a role in modifying the convective system over the subtropical western Pacific, resulting in changes in atmospheric teleconnections between the two types of strong NEASM. The weak NEASM, in which the anomalous rainfall pattern resembles that of the A-type strong NEASM except for the sign, is also discussed.

Full access
Hyun-Su Jo, Sang-Wook Yeh, and Wenju Cai

Abstract

We found that a positive sea surface temperature (SST)–precipitation relationship in the western tropical Pacific (WTP) during boreal spring, in which higher SSTs are associated with higher precipitation, episodically weakens from the late 1990s to the early 2010s. During 1980–98, warm SSTs induce positive precipitation and low pressure in the WTP. The associated enhanced convection dampens the initial warm SSTs by reflecting incoming solar radiation. The reduced incoming solar radiation into the ocean leads to a SST cooling tendency. In contrast, the associated southwesterly wind anomalies reduce oceanic mixing by decreasing the mean wind, contributing to an SST warming tendency, though relatively small. Therefore, the cloud–radiation effect is a dominant process of the negative SST tendency. By contrast, during 1999–2014, although an SST cooling tendency is similarly induced by warm SST anomalies, the cooling tendency is enhanced by anomalous ocean advection, as a result of enhanced easterly wind anomalies in the southern part of the WTP. This results in a weakening of a positive relationship of the SST and precipitation during 1999–2014. As such, the associated anomalous convective heating in the WTP during 1999–2014 is weak, changing the atmospheric teleconnection patterns in the midlatitude and surface air temperature anomalies in western North America and northeastern Eurasia.

Full access