Climate Dynamics

, Volume 46, Issue 9–10, pp 2759–2771 | Cite as

The zonal movement of the Indian–East Asian summer monsoon interface in relation to the land–sea thermal contrast anomaly over East Asia

  • Yun Tao
  • Jie Cao
  • Guangdong Lan
  • Qin Su


Based on atmospheric circulation reanalysis, global gridded precipitation, and outgoing longwave radiation datasets, this study reveals the physical process through which the land–sea thermal contrast over East Asia interrelates with the variability of the interface between the Indian summer monsoon and East Asian summer monsoon (IIE). The results indicate that the release of latent heating exerted by the low-frequency variability of anomalous land–sea thermal contrast is one of the most important physical processes correlating with the zonal movement of the IIE, in which the release of latent heating over eastern East Asia makes the greatest contribution. When a lower apparent moisture sink occurs over the South China Sea but a higher one over southern China, an anomalously positive land–sea thermal contrast is formed. An anomalous convergent zone in relation to the positive land–sea thermal contrast, located in the eastern part of the IIE, will favor the IIE to move more eastward than normal, and vice versa. An anomalous divergent zone located in the eastern part of the IIE will benefit the IIE to shift more westward than normal. Experiments using a linear baroclinic model confirm the physical processes revealed by the observational analysis.


Indian–East Asian summer monsoon interface Zonal movement Land–sea thermal contrast East Asia 



We thank Prof. M. Watanabe for providing the linear baroclinic model and the anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments that lead to improvement of the manuscript. This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41375097 and 41375091) and the Jiangsu Collaborative Innovation Center for Climate Change.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Meteorological Institute of Yunnan ProvinceKunmingChina
  2. 2.Department of Atmospheric SciencesYunnan UniversityKunmingChina
  3. 3.Yunnan Key Laboratory of International Rivers and Transboundary Eco-SecurityKunmingChina
  4. 4.School of Environmental Science and EngineeringSun Yat-sen UniversityGuangzhouChina

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