Theoretical and Applied Climatology

, Volume 124, Issue 1–2, pp 1–14 | Cite as

Nonstationary impact of the winter North Atlantic Oscillation and the response of mid-latitude Eurasian climate

  • Tingting Xu
  • Zhengguo ShiEmail author
  • Hongli Wang
  • Zhisheng An
Original Paper


The North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), although a local atmospheric mode over the North Atlantic Ocean, plays an important remote role in the Eurasian climate. However, the link between the NAO and Eurasian climate might be unstable. Here, we present a study on the relationship between the winter NAO and mid-latitude Eurasian climate, especially the mid-latitude East Asian precipitation, mainly based on meteorological data and output from an 1155-year-long coupled ocean–atmosphere model simulation. The results show that the winter NAO exerts a remarkable effect on the changes in mid-latitude Eurasian climate; however, the impact of the NAO is nonstationary. According to the model output, the impact of the NAO varies synchronously with the NAO variance with a period of around 150 years. During the high NAO variance period, the NAO has significant correlation with mid-latitude East Asian precipitation; low NAO variance periods do not. The variation of the NAO–precipitation teleconnection may arise from the changing influence of NAO on the local temperature. The NAO signal moves eastward by a zonally oriented wave train, where it modulates the atmospheric circulation structure, and thus results in the nonstationary relationship between the NAO and mid-latitude East Asian precipitation.


North Atlantic Oscillation North Atlantic Oscillation Index East Asian Winter Monsoon Empirical Orthogonal Function Mode Global Precipitation Climatology Centre 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This work was jointly supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (2013CB955904), the Key Research Program of Chinese Academy of Sciences (KZZD-EW-04-07), and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41290255, 41105060).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tingting Xu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Zhengguo Shi
    • 1
    • 3
    • 4
    Email author
  • Hongli Wang
    • 1
  • Zhisheng An
    • 1
    • 4
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Loess and Quaternary Geology, Institute of Earth EnvironmentChinese Academy of SciencesXi’anChina
  2. 2.University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.CAS Center for Excellence in Tibetan Plateau Earth SciencesBeijingChina
  4. 4.Joint Center Global Change StudiesBeijingChina

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