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Maintenance of the South Asian jet wave train: eddy kinetic energy balance

Abstract

The mechanisms of the propagation and maintenance of the South Asian jet wave train are investigated in this study by examining the eddy kinetic energy (EKE) balance along the wave train. The intensity and evolution of the disturbances along the wave train can be well represented by the variation of EKE centers. The east-to-west discrepancy in the intensity of EKE centers indicates the wave train is not only maintained by the waveguide effect of the jet stream, but also fueled and damped by other physical processes along the wave train. It is found that both baroclinic and barotropic conversions are key energy sources during the lifespan of the wave train, characterized by regional differences. They evolve with the eddies and are offset mainly by energy exported by the ageostrophic geopotential fluxes after the peak of the eddies. They are strong upstream of the wave train, as extremely strong cooling/warming advection appears behind/ahead of the trough over the eastern Mediterranean Sea-Middle East where abnormal descent/ascent occurs, and potential energy is transformed into kinetic energy. As this trough tilts southwestward, kinetic energy can be converted from the mean flow to eddies on the north flank of the South Asian jet. Strong dissipation occurs over the Middle East, which might be responsible for the relatively weaker EKE centers downstream. Over China, the eddy is fueled by strong barotropic conversion again, as a result of the northward shift of the jet axis.

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Acknowledgements

This work is jointly supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Project no. 41775043), National Key Research and Development Programs of China (Project nos. 2019YFC1510400 and 2016YFA0600601), and Guangdong Province Key Laboratory for Climate Change and Natural Disaster Studies (Grant 2020B1212060025).

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Correspondence to Xiuzhen Li.

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Li, X. Maintenance of the South Asian jet wave train: eddy kinetic energy balance. Clim Dyn 57, 687–700 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00382-021-05735-7

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Keywords

  • Maintenance mechanisms
  • South Asian jet wave train
  • Eddy kinetic energy balance
  • Baroclinic conversion
  • Barotropic conversion