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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Influence of Decadal Variability of Global Oceans on South Asian Monsoon and ENSO-Monsoon Relation
by Krishnamurthy, Lakshmi, Ph.D., George Mason University, 2012, 198; 3505220
Abstract (Summary)

This study has investigated the influence of the decadal variability associated with global oceans on South Asian monsoon and El NiƱo-Southern Oscillation (ENSO)-monsoon relation. The results are based on observational analysis using long records of monsoon rainfall and circulation and coupled general circulation model experiments using the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Climate System Model (CCSM) version 4 model. The multi-channel singular spectrum analysis (MSSA) of the observed rainfall over India yields three decadal modes. The first mode (52 year period) is associated with the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), the second one (21 year) with the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) and the third mode (13 year) with the Atlantic tripole. The existence of these decadal modes in the monsoon was also found in the control simulation of NCAR CCSM4. The regionally de-coupled model experiments performed to isolate the influence of North Pacific and North Atlantic also substantiate the above results.

The relation between the decadal modes in the monsoon rainfall with the known decadal modes in global SST is examined. The PDO has significant negative correlation with the Indian Monsoon Rainfall (IMR). The mechanism for PDO-monsoon relation is hypothesized through the seasonal footprinting mechanism and further through Walker and Hadley circulations. The model results also confirm the negative correlation between PDO and IMR and the mechanism through which PDO influences monsoon. Both observational and model analysis show that droughts (floods) are more likely over India than floods (droughts) when ENSO and PDO are in their warm (cold) phase.

This study emphasizes the importance of carefully distinguishing the different decadal modes in the SST in the North Atlantic Ocean as they have different impacts on the monsoon. The AMO exhibits significant positive correlation with the IMR while the Atlantic tripole has significant negative correlation with the IMR. The AMO influences the Indian monsoon through atmospheric winds related to high summer North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) mode leading to enhanced moisture flow over the Indian subcontinent. The Atlantic tripole mode affects the rainfall over India by enhancing the moisture flow through the equatorial westerly winds associated with the NAO. The model also simulates the positive and negative relation of AMO and tripole, respectively, with the monsoon rainfall. The model also indicates the enhanced moisture flow over India related to the positive phase of AMO through the equatorial westerly flow. But, for the tripole mode, the model indicates flow of moisture through the Bay of Bengal in contrast to observations where it is through the Arabian Sea.

The reason for the absence of decadal mode in IMR inherent to the Indian Ocean is also explored. The SSA on dipole mode index (DMI) index reveals three modes. The first two modes are related to the biennial and canonical ENSO at interannual timescale while the third mode varies on decadal timescale and is related to PDO. The wind regression pattern associated with the PDO-IOD mode shows northeasterly winds enhancing the southeasterly flow from the southeastern Indian Ocean related to the Indian Ocean dipole (IOD) mode. The model also shows the influence of canonical ENSO and PDO influence on IOD, although the variance explained by PDO mode is lower in the model relative to observations.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Krishnamurthy, V.
Commitee: Delsole, Timothy, Kinter, James L., Kirtman, Benjamin P., Summers, Michael E.
School: George Mason University
Department: Climate Dynamics
School Location: United States -- Virginia
Source: DAI-B 73/08(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Climate Change, Physical oceanography, Atmospheric sciences
Keywords: Amo, Atlantic tripole, Decadal variability, Enso-monsoon, Global oceans, Indian monsoon, Pdo
Publication Number: 3505220
ISBN: 978-1-267-29356-5
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