, Volume 106, Issue 1-2, pp 57-73
Date: 10 Dec 2009

Regional features of precipitation over Asia and summer extreme precipitation over Southeast Asia and their associations with atmospheric–oceanic conditions

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Abstract

The variations of both total and extreme precipitations over Asia are characterized by large regional features and seasonality. Extreme precipitation mainly occurs in summer and then in autumn over South Asia but it is a prominent phenomenon in all seasons over Southeast Asia. It explains above 40% of the total precipitation in winter over India, while the ratio of extreme precipitation to total precipitation is 30% or smaller in all seasons over southern-central China. Over Southeast Asia, the largest ratio appears in winter. The extreme precipitation over Southeast Asia (EPSEA) exhibits significant positive trends in all seasons except autumn. The long-term increase in summer EPSEA is associated with significant surface warming over extratropical Asia and the Indo-Pacific oceans and linked to a large-scale anomalous cyclonic pattern over Southeast Asia. An increase in de-trended summer EPSEA is associated with less significant surface warming. However, it is still clearly linked to an anomalous cyclonic pattern over Southeast Asia, contributed by intensifications of monsoon flow from the west, trade wind from the east, and cross-equatorial flow over Indonesia. The antecedent features of increased summer EPSEA include an overall warming over the tropical–subtropical northern hemisphere and an anomalous cyclonic pattern over Southeast Asia in winter and spring. When the large-scale Asian monsoon (measured by the Webster-Yang monsoon index) or the South Asian monsoon is strong, summer extreme precipitation mainly increases over tropical Asia. When monsoon is strong over Southeast Asia or East Asia, extreme precipitation increases over Southeast Asia and decreases over East Asia. A strong summer monsoon over Southeast Asia or East Asia is also followed by decreased autumn extreme precipitation over Southeast Asia.