Climatic characteristics of East Asian tropical monsoon depressions
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The climatic characteristics of 260 East Asian tropical monsoon depressions (EAMDs) are investigated using the ERA-Interim reanalysis dataset and a tracking dataset of global monsoon low-pressure systems. Most EAMDs form over the South China Sea (SCS) and the western tropical Pacific Ocean in July–October and have an average lifetime of 10 days. The vertical structures of EAMDs are usually upright or tilt slightly westward with height. The warm-over-cold thermal structure is a distinctive characteristic of EAMDs and two potential vorticity (PV) centers are related to the warm core in the upper level and the specific humidity center in the lower level, respectively. We divided the EAMDs into four groups: eastward-moving, westward-moving, turning, and northwestward-moving EAMDs. Most of the eastward-moving EAMDs form over the SCS in May and June, whereas the westward-moving EAMDs form over both the SCS and the western Pacific Ocean in July–October. The turning and northwestward-moving EAMDs are mainly generated over the western Pacific Ocean and have longer lifetimes. The structures of the eastward-moving and turning EAMDs show common characteristics in each stage. Their vertical structures change from upright in the developing and peak stages to northeast tilting with height in the attenuating stage, especially for the specific humidity. By contrast, the structures of westward- and northwestward-moving EAMDs show little change during their lifetime. They are symmetrical relative to the vertical axis of the EAMDs over their whole lifetime and only vary in strength.
The authors thank the editor and two anonymous reviewers for providing constructive comments that improved the quality of this paper.
This study was jointly supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant 41775060 and CAMS Funds for the Development of Science and Technology under Grant 2018KJ029.
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