Climate Dynamics

, Volume 48, Issue 9–10, pp 2859–2879 | Cite as

Tracking the delayed response of the northern winter stratosphere to ENSO using multi reanalyses and model simulations



The concurrent effects of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) on the northern winter stratosphere have been widely recognized; however, the delayed effects of ENSO in the next winter after mature ENSO have yet to be confirmed in multi reanalyses and model simulations. This study uses three reanalysis datasets, a long-term fully coupled model simulation, and a high-top general circulation model to examine ENSO’s delayed effects in the stratosphere. The warm-minus-cold composite analyses consistently showed that, except those quick-decaying quasi-biennial ENSO events that reverse signs during July–August–September (JAS) in their decay years, ENSO events particularly those quasi-quadrennial (QQ) that persist through JAS, always have a significant effect on the extratropical stratosphere in both the concurrent winter and the next winter following mature ENSO. During the concurrent winter, the QQ ENSO-induced Pacific-North American (PNA) pattern corresponds to an anomalous wavenumber-1 from the upper troposphere to the stratosphere, which acts to intensify/weaken the climatological wave pattern during warm/cold ENSO. Associated with the zonally quasi-homogeneous tropical forcing in spring of the QQ ENSO decay years, there appear persistent and zonally quasi-homogeneous temperature anomalies in the midlatitudes from the upper troposphere to the lower stratosphere until summer. With the reduction in ENSO forcing and the PNA responses in the following winter, an anomalous wavenumber-2 prevails in the extratropics. Although the anomalous wave flux divergence in the upper stratospheric layer is still dominated by wavenumber-1, it is mainly caused by wavenumber-2 in the lower stratosphere. However, the wavenumber-2 activity in the next winter is always underestimated in the model simulations, and wavenumber-1 activity dominates in both winters.


ENSO Delayed effects Northern winter stratosphere 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Numerical Modeling for Atmospheric Sciences and Geophysical Fluid Dynamics, Institute of Atmospheric PhysicsChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  2. 2.Collaborative Innovation Center on Forecast and Evaluation of Meteorological Disasters, KLME, and College of Atmospheric ScienceNanjing University of Information Science and TechnologyNanjingChina
  3. 3.College of Earth ScienceUniversity of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  4. 4.Department of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric ScienceFlorida State UniversityTallahasseeUSA

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