Climate Dynamics

, Volume 51, Issue 11–12, pp 4543–4554 | Cite as

Predictability of summer extreme precipitation days over eastern China

  • Juan Li
  • Bin WangEmail author


Extreme precipitation events have severe impacts on human activity and natural environment, but prediction of extreme precipitation events remains a considerable challenge. The present study aims to explore the sources of predictability and to estimate the predictability of the summer extreme precipitation days (EPDs) over eastern China. Based on the region- and season-dependent variability of EPDs, all stations over eastern China are divided into two domains: South China (SC) and northern China (NC). Two domain-averaged EPDs indices during their local high EPDs seasons (May–June for SC and July–August for NC) are therefore defined. The simultaneous lower boundary anomalies associated with each EPDs index are examined, and we find: (a) the increased EPDs over SC are related to a rapid decaying El Nino and controlled by Philippine Sea anticyclone anomalies in May–June; (b) the increased EPDs over NC are accompanied by a developing La Nina and anomalous zonal sea level pressure contrast between the western North Pacific subtropical high and East Asian low in July–August. Tracking back the origins of these boundary anomalies, one or two physically meaningful predictors are detected for each regional EPDs index. The causative relationships between the predictors and the corresponding EPDs over each region are discussed using lead-lag correlation analyses. Using these selected predictors, a set of Physics-based Empirical models is derived. The 13-year (2001–2013) independent forecast shows significant temporal correlation skills of 0.60 and 0.74 for the EPDs index of SC and NC, respectively, providing an estimation of the predictability for summer EPDs over eastern China.


Extreme precipitation Eastern China Physics-based empirical model Seasonal predictability Seasonal prediction East Asian summer monsoon 



This study is supported by the Atmosphere–Ocean Research Center (AORC) and International Pacific Research Center (IPRC) at University of Hawaii and the National Research Foundation (NRF) of Korea through a Global Research Laboratory (GRL) Grant of the Korean Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MEST, #2011–0021927). The AORC is partially funded by Nanjing University of Information Science and Technology (NUIST). This is the NUIST-Earth System Modeling Center (ESMC) publication number 174, the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology publication number 1280, the IPRC publication number 10112. The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Earth System Modeling CenterNanjing University of Information Science and TechnologyNanjingChina
  2. 2.Department of Atmospheric Sciences, International Pacific Research Center, SOESTUniversity of Hawaii at ManoaHonoluluUSA

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