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The influence of boreal spring Arctic Oscillation on the subsequent winter ENSO in CMIP5 models
- Chen, Shangfeng, Chen, Wen, Yu, Bin
- Climate dynamics 2017 v.48 no.9-10 pp. 2949-2965
- El Nino, climate models, spring, wind direction, winter, Arctic region
- This study examines the influence of boreal spring Arctic Oscillation (AO) on the subsequent winter El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) using 15 climate model outputs from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5). Results show that, out of the 15 CMIP5 models, CCSM4 and CNRM-CM5 can well reproduce the significant AO–ENSO connection. These two models capture the observed spring AO related anomalous cyclone (anticyclone) over the subtropical western-central North Pacific, and westerly (easterly) winds over the tropical western-central Pacific. In contrast, the spring AO-related anomalous circulation over the subtropical North Pacific is insignificant in the other 13 models, and the simulations in these models cannot capture the significant influence of the spring AO on ENSO. Further analyses indicate that the performance of the CMIP5 simulations in reproducing the AO–ENSO connection is related to the ability in simulating the spring North Pacific synoptic eddy intensity and the spring AO’s Pacific component. Strong synoptic-scale eddy intensity results in a strong synoptic eddy feedback on the mean flow, leading to strong cyclonic circulation anomalies over the subtropical North Pacific, which contributes to a significant AO–ENSO connection. In addition, a strong spring AO’s Pacific component and associated easterly wind anomalies to its south may provide more favorable conditions for the development of spring AO-related cyclonic circulation anomalies over the subtropical North Pacific.