Advances in Atmospheric Sciences

, Volume 22, Issue 1, pp 39–48

Possible impacts of the arctic oscillation on the interdecadal variation of summer monsoon rainfall in East Asia


DOI: 10.1007/BF02930868

Cite this article as:
Jianhua, J., Junmei, L., Jie, C. et al. Adv. Atmos. Sci. (2005) 22: 39. doi:10.1007/BF02930868


The influences of the wintertime AO (Arctic Oscillation) on the interdecadal variation of summer monsoon rainfall in East Asia were examined. An interdecadal abrupt change was found by the end of the 1970s in the variation of the AO index and the leading principal component time series of the summer rainfall in East Asia. The rainfall anomaly changed from below normal to above normal in central China, the southern part of northeastern China and the Korean peninsula around 1978. However, the opposite interdecadal variation was found in the rainfall anomaly in North China and South China. The interdecadal variation of summer rainfall is associated with the weakening of the East Asia summer monsoon circulation. It is indicated that the interdecadal variation of the AO exerts an influence on the weakening of the monsoon circulation. The recent trend in the AO toward its high-index polarity during the past two decades plays important roles in the land-sea contrast anomalies and wintertime precipitation anomaly. The mid- and high-latitude regions of the Asian continent are warming, while the low-latitude regions are cooling in winter and spring along with the AO entering its high-index polarity after the late 1970s. In the meantime, the precipitation over the Tibetan Plateau and South China is excessive, implying an increase of soil moisture. The cooling tendency of the land in the southern part of Asia will persist until summer because of the memory of soil moisture. So the warming of the Asian continent is relatively slow in summer. Moreover, the Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean, which are located southward and eastward of the Asian land, are warming from winter to summer. This suggests that the contrast between the land and sea is decreased in summer. The interdecadal decrease of the land-sea heat contrast finally leads to the weakening of the East Asia summer monsoon circulation.

Key words

the Arctic Oscillation interdecadal variation summer monsoon rainfall land-sea heat contrast 


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© Advances in Atmospheric Sciences 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.China Meteorological Administration Training CentreBeijing
  2. 2.Institute of Atmospheric PhysicsChinese Academy of SciencesBeijing
  3. 3.Department of Atmospheric SciencesYunnan UniversityKunming

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