Simulation of the Indian Ocean Dipole: a relevant criterion for selecting models for climate projections

Cai, W. and Sullivan, A. and Cowan, T. and Ribbe, J. and Shi, G. (2011) Simulation of the Indian Ocean Dipole: a relevant criterion for selecting models for climate projections. Geophysical Research Letters, 38 (3). pp. 1-5. ISSN 0094-8276

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A multi-model average shows that 21st century warming over the eastern Indian Ocean (IO) is slower than that to the west, but with strong inter-model variations. Is the simulation of the Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) relevant to the inter-model variations? We demonstrate that inter-model variations of this future warming are consistent with how well models simulate historical IOD properties; models with a stronger IOD amplitude systematically produce a slower eastern IO warming rate with greater future rainfall changes in IOD-affected regions. These models also produce a stronger Bjerknes-like positive feedback, involving sea surface temperatures (SSTs), winds and a shoaling thermocline in the eastern IO. As warming proceeds, models with a stronger positive feedback induce a greater response to warming-induced changes such as easterly trends associated with the Walker circulation, generating a smaller warming in the eastern IO. Simulating the present-day IOD properties is, therefore, a relevant criterion for selecting models for climate projections.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Accepted version deposited in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Depositing User: Dr Joachim Ribbe
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Biological and Physical Sciences
Date Deposited: 25 Jan 2011 06:14
Last Modified: 11 Sep 2014 05:15
Uncontrolled Keywords: climate change; climate models; rainfall; Indian Ocean; Walker circulation; global warming
Fields of Research : 04 Earth Sciences > 0401 Atmospheric Sciences > 040104 Climate Change Processes
04 Earth Sciences > 0401 Atmospheric Sciences > 040107 Meteorology
08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0801 Artificial Intelligence and Image Processing > 080110 Simulation and Modelling
Socio-Economic Objective: D Environment > 96 Environment > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960303 Climate Change Models
Identification Number or DOI: doi: 10.1029/2010GL046242

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