pure and applied geophysics

, Volume 115, Issue 5–6, pp 1111–1130 | Cite as

Hemispheric simulation of the Asian summer monsoon

  • Douglas A. Abbott


A three-level, β-plane, filtered model is used to simulate the Northern Hemisphere summer monsoon. A time-averaged initial state, devoid of sub-planetary scale waves, is integrated through 30 days on a 5° latitude-longitude grid. Day 25 through day 30 integrations are then repeated on a 2.5° grid. The planetary-scale waves are forced by time-independent, spatially varying diabatic heating. Energy is extracted via internal and surface frictional processes. Orography is excluded to simplify synoptic-scale energy sources.

During integration the model energy first increases, but stabilizes near day 10. Subsequent flow patterns closely resemble the hemisphere summer monsoon. Climatological features remain quasi-stationary. At 200 mb high pressure dominates the land area, large-scale troughs are found over the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, the easterly jet forms south of Asia, and subtropical jets develop in the westerlies. At 800 mb subtropical highs dominate the oceans and the monsoon trough develops over the Asian land mass. The planetary scales at all levels develop a realistic cellular structure from the passage of transient synoptic-scale features, e.g., a baroclinic cyclone track develops near 55°N and westward propagating waves form in the easterlies.

Barotropic redistribution of kinetic energy is examined over a low-latitude zonal strip using a Fourier wave-space. In contrast to higher latitudes where the zonal flow and both longer and shorter waves are fed by barotropic energy redistribution from the baroclinically unstable wavelengths, the low-latitude waves have a planetary-scale kinetic energy source. Wave numbers 1 and 2 maintain both the zonal flow and all shorter scales via barotropic transfers. Transient and standing wave processes are examined individually and in combination.

Wave energy accumulates at wave numbers 7 and 8 at 200 mb and at wave number 11 in the lower troposphere. The 800-mb waves are thermally indirect and in the mean they give energy to the zonal flow. These characteristics agree with atmospheric observation. The energy source for these waves is the three wave barotropic transfer. The implications of examining barotropic processes in a Fourier wave-space, vice the more common approach of separating the flow into a mean plus a deviation are discussed.

Key words

Monsoon: 3 level model Hemispheric circulation 


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Copyright information

© Birkhäuser Verlag 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • Douglas A. Abbott
    • 1
  1. 1.Headquarters Air Weather ServiceScott AFBUSA

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