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2005 .

(1 publication)

F. Codron. Relation between Annular Modes and the Mean State: Southern Hemisphere Summer. Journal of Climate, 18:320-330, January 2005. [ bib | DOI | ADS link ]

The annular modes emerge as the leading mode of extratropical month-to-month climate variability in both hemispheres. Here the influence of the background state on the structure and dynamics of the Southern Hemisphere annular mode (SAM) during the austral summer when the climatology is characterized by a single, well-defined, eddy-driven jet is studied. Subsets of the climatology are constructed for early and late summer, and for contrasting polarities of the ENSO cycle. The analysis is based both on observations and on perpetual-state GCM experiments. The main differences between the subsets involve variations of the latitude of the mean jet.It is found that in all the cases, the SAM is characterized by latitudinal shifts of the jet about its mean position, reinforced by a positive momentum flux feedback from baroclinic waves. This result is consistent with previous studies of the dynamics of the zonally averaged circulation but is found here to hold over all longitudes and for different positions of the mean jet. The low frequency eddies exert a weaker negative feedback upon the mean flow, with a less zonally symmetric structure.The strong differences in the amplitude of the SAM among the various climatologies seem to be determined by a combination of 1) the variance of the ”random” forcing by transient eddies and 2) the strength of the positive feedback component of this forcing. The latter mechanism increases the variance at low frequencies only and lengthens the decorrelation time of zonal-mean zonal wind anomalies. It tends to become stronger when the mean jet moves equatorward.

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