Seasonal southern hemisphere multi-variable reflection of the southern annular mode in atmosphere and ocean reanalyses Academic Article uri icon


  • 2017, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Variations of southern hemisphere (SH) climate variables are often linked to the southern annular mode (SAM) variability. We examined such linkage by seasons using state-of-the-art atmosphere and ocean/sea-ice reanalyses. The associated SAM related anomaly (SRA) fields of the climate variables, denoting anomalies corresponding to the same variation in SAM, are overall consistent across the reanalyses. Among the atmospheric products, 20CRV2 differs from ERA-interim and CFSR in the sea-level pressure SRAs over the Amundsen Sea, resulting in less warming over the Antarctic Peninsula. Among the ocean reanalyses, ORAP5 and C-GLORS exhibit the largest consistency. The major difference between them and the lower-resolution CFSR and SODA reanalyses is deeper penetration of anomalous meridional currents. Compared to the other ocean reanalyses, CFSR exhibits stronger and spatially more coherent surface-current SRAs, resulting in greater SRAs of sea-ice motion and ice thickness along the ice edges. The SRAs of sensible and total surface heat fluxes are reduced in CFSR due to oceanatmosphere coupling. Significant sea-ice concentration SRAs are present on the west side of peninsulas along the east Antarctica coast in spring and winter, most notably in ORAP5 and C-GLORS, implying changes in new-ice production and shelf-water formation. Most atmosphere and ocean variables manifest an annular SRA pattern in summer and a non-annular pattern in the other seasons, with a wavenumber-3 structure strongest in autumn and weakest in summer. The wavenumber-3 structure should be related to the zonal wave three pattern of the SH circulation, the relation of which to SAM needs further exploration.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Zhang, Z., Uotila, P., Stoessel, A., Vihma, T., Liu, H., & Zhong, Y.

citation count

  • 17

complete list of authors

  • Zhang, Zhaoru||Uotila, Petteri||Stoessel, Achim||Vihma, Timo||Liu, Hailong||Zhong, Yisen

publication date

  • February 2018