Sensitivity Experiments on the Poleward Shift of Tropical Cyclones over the Western North Pacific under Warming Ocean Conditions
Recent studies found that in the context of global warming, the observed tropical cyclones (TCs) exhibit significant poleward migration trend in terms of the mean latitude where TCs reach their lifetime-maximum intensity in the western North Pacific (WNP). This poleward migration of TC tracks can be attributed to not only anthropogenic forcing (e.g., continuous increase of sea surface temperature (SST)), but also impacts of other factors (e.g., natural variability). In the present study, to eliminate the impacts of other factors and thus focus on the impact of unvaried SST on climatological WNP TC tracks, the mesoscale Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model is used to conduct a suite of idealized sensitivity experiments with increased SST. Comparisons among the results of these experiments show the possible changes in climatological TC track, TC track density, and types of TC track in the context of SST increase. The results demonstrate that under the warmer SST conditions, the climatological mean TC track systematically shifts poleward significantly in the WNP, which is consistent with the previous studies. Meanwhile, the ocean warming also leads to the decreased (increased) destructive potential of TCs in low (middle) latitudes, and thus northward migration of the region where TCs have the largest impact. Further results imply the possibility that under the ocean warming, the percentage of TCs with westward/northwestward tracks decreases/increases distinctly.
Key wordstropical cyclone ocean warming poleward shift numerical experiment
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