Journal of Meteorological Research

, Volume 33, Issue 5, pp 870–884 | Cite as

Relationship between Extreme Precipitation and Temperature in Two Different Regions: The Tibetan Plateau and Middle-East China

  • Rui Wang
  • Tao Xian
  • Mengxiao Wang
  • Fengjiao Chen
  • Yuanjian Yang
  • Xiangdong Zhang
  • Rui Li
  • Lei Zhong
  • Chun Zhao
  • Yunfei FuEmail author
Regular Article


The change of extreme precipitation with temperature has regional characteristics in the context of global warming. In this study, radiosonde data, co-located rain gauge (RG) observations, and Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) precipitation radar (PR) products are used to explore the relationship between extreme precipitation intensity and near-surface temperature in Middle-East China (MEC) and the eastern Tibetan Plateau (TP) during 1998–2012. The results show that extreme precipitation intensity increases with increasing temperature at an approximate Clausius-Clapeyron (C-C) rate (i.e., water vapor increases by 7% as temperature increases by 1°C based on the C-C equation) in MEC and TP, but the rate of increase is larger in TP than in MEC. This is probably because TP (MEC) is featured with deep convective (stratiform) precipitation, which releases more (less) latent heat and strengthens the convection intensity on a shorter (longer) timescale. It is also found that when temperature is higher than 25°C (15°C) in MEC (TP), the extreme precipitation intensity decreases with rise of temperature, suggesting that the precipitation intensity does not always increase with warming. In this case, the limited atmospheric humidity and precipitable water could be the primary factors for the decrease in extreme precipitation intensity at higher temperatures.

Key words

extreme precipitation Clausius-Clapeyron (C-C) rate temperature humidity precipitable water 


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We appreciate the NCDC, CMA-NMIC, and GSFC for providing the IGRA radiosonde data, RG precipitation data, and TRMM PR 2A25 products. We also appreciate the valuable comments by the Editor and two anonymous reviewers.


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Copyright information

© The Chinese Meteorological Society and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rui Wang
    • 1
  • Tao Xian
    • 1
  • Mengxiao Wang
    • 1
  • Fengjiao Chen
    • 2
  • Yuanjian Yang
    • 3
  • Xiangdong Zhang
    • 4
  • Rui Li
    • 1
  • Lei Zhong
    • 1
  • Chun Zhao
    • 1
  • Yunfei Fu
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.School of Earth and Space SciencesUniversity of Science and Technology of ChinaHefeiChina
  2. 2.Anhui Meteorological Information CenterAnhui Institute of Meteorological SciencesHefeiChina
  3. 3.School of Atmospheric physicsNanjing University of Information Science & TechnologyNanjingChina
  4. 4.International Arctic Research Center and Department of Atmospheric SciencesUniversity of Alaska FairbanksFairbanksUSA

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