Our research focuses on the analysis of extreme high maximum air temperature events (EXHTEs) in the Czech Republic in the period 1961–2010, their climatological characteristics, and on the identification of synoptic-scale circulation conditions conductive to them. EXHTEs are detected using the Weather Extremity Index (WEI) combining return periods of daily maximum air temperature, duration of events, and the extent of the affected area. We selected 37 EXHTEs as non-overlapping periods with the highest WEI. Some long EXHTEs were divided into several shorter synoptically homogeneous episodes. Using the two-level divisive clustering of 700 hPa air temperature and wind field anomalies, we obtained four main variants of synoptic-scale circulation conditions. The most frequent variant associated with extreme episodes is characterized by a westerly flow connected with a high pressure ridge extending northeastward from North Africa over Central Europe or with an anticyclone centered over the Central Mediterranean. The most extreme episodes occurred during the variant characterized by an easterly flow between a high pressure area to the northeast and a low pressure area to the southeast.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Bartholy J, Pongrácz R (2007) Regional analysis of extreme temperature and precipitation indices for the Carpathian Basin from 1946 to 2001. Glob Planet Chang 57(1–2):83–95
Barriopedro D, Fischer EM, Luterbacher J, Trigo RM, Garcia-Herrera R (2011) The hot summer of 2010: redrawing the temperature record map of Europe. Science 332:220–224
Belda M, Holtanová E, Halenka T, Kalvová J (2014) Climate classification revisited: from Köppen to Trewartha. Clim Res 59:1–13. doi:10.3354/cr01204
Beniston M, Stephenson DB (2004) Extreme climatic events and their evolution under changing climatic conditions. Glob Planet Chang 44:1–9. doi:10.1016/j.gloplacha.2004.06.001
Beniston M, Stephenson DB, Christensen OB, Ferro CAT, Frei C, Goyette S, Halsnaes K, Holt T, Jylha K, Koffi B, Palutikof J, Scholl R, Semmler T, Woth K (2007) Future extreme events in European climate: an exploration of regional climate model projections. Clim Chang 81:71–95. doi:10.1007/s10584-006-9226-z
Brázdil R, Chromá K, Dobrovlný P, Tolasz R (2009) Climate fluctuations in the Czech Republic during the period 1961–2005. Int J Climatol 29:223–242. doi:10.1002/joc.1718
Cavazos T (1999) Large-scale circulation anomalies conducive to extreme precipitation events and derivation of daily rainfall in Northeastern Mexico and Southeastern Texas. J Clim 12:1506–1523
Cohen JC, Veysseire JM, Bessemoulin P (2005) Bio-climatological aspects of summer 2003 over France. In: Extreme weather events and public health responses. Springer, pp. 33–45. DOI: 10.1007/3-540-28862-7_4
Coles S (2001) An introduction to statistical modeling of extreme values. Springer Verlag, London. ISBN 1-85233-459-2
Coumou D, Rahmstorf S (2012) A decade of weather extremes. Nat Clim Chang 2:491–496
Della-Marta PM, Luterbacher J, von Weissenfluh H, Xoplaky E, Brunet M, Wanner H (2007) Summer heat waves over Western Europe 1880–2003, their relationship to large scale forcing and predictability. Clim Dyn 29:251–275
Diaz HF, Murnane RJ (2008) The significance of weather and climate extremes to society: an introduction. In: Climate extremes and society. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, pp 1–7. doi:10.1017/CBO9780511535840.003
Domonkos P, Kyselý J, Piotrowicz K, Petrovic P, Likso T (2003) Variability of extreme temperature events in south-central Europe during the 20th century and its relationship with large-scale circulation. Int J Climatol 23:987–1010
Fischer EM, Schär C (2010) Consistent geographical patterns of changes in high-impact European heatwaves. Nat Geosci. doi:10.1038/NGEO866
Hess P, Brezowsky H (1977) Katalog der Grosswetterlagen Europas 1881–1976. Berichte des Deutschen Wetterdienstes, 113. Deutscher Wetterdienst, Offenbach a. Main
Holtanová E, Valeriánová A, Crhová L, Racko S (2014) Heat wave of August 2012 in the Czech Republic: comparison of two approaches to assessment of high temperature events. Stud Geophys Geod. doi:10.1007/s11200-014-0805-6, 10/2014
Kalnay E, Kanamitsu M, Kistler R, Collins W, Deaven D, Gandin L, Iredell M, Saha S, White G, Woollen J, Yhu Y, Chelliah M, Ebisuzaki W, Higgins W, Janowiak J, Mo KC, Ropelewski C, Wang J, Leetmaa A, Reynolds R, Jenne R, Joseph D (1996) The NCEP/NCAR 40-year reanalysis project. Bull Am Meteorol Soc 77(3):437–471
Kašpar M, Müller M, Pecho J (2013) Comparison of meteorological conditions during may and august 2010 floods in Central Europe. AUC Geographica 48(2):27–34
Kašpar M, Müller M (2010) Variants of synoptic-scale patterns inducing heavy rains in the Czech Republic. Phys Chem Earth 35:477–483
Krška K, Munzar J (1984) Special temperature conditions of tropic summer in ČSSR and in Europe. In Czech Meteorologické zprávy 37
Kyselý J (2008) Influence of the persistence of circulation patterns on warm and cold temperature anomalies in Europe: analysis over the 20th century. Glob Planet Chang 62:147–163
Kyselý J (2010) Recent severe heat waves in Central Europe: how to view them in a long-term prospect? Int J Climatol 30:89–109
Kyselý J, Plavcová E (2012) Declining impacts of hot spells on mortality in the Czech Republic, 1986–2009: adaptation to climate change? Clim Chang 113:437–453. doi:10.1007/s10584-011-0358-4
Lhotka O, Kyselý J (2014) Characterizing joint effects of spatial extent, temperature magnitude and duration of heat waves and cold spells over Central Europe. Int J Climatol. doi:10.1002/joc.4050
Müller M, Kašpar M (2014) Event-adjusted evaluation of weather and climate extremes. Nat Hazards Earth Syst Sci, in press.
Müller M, Kašpar M, Řezáčová D, Sokol Z (2009) Extremeness of meteorological variables as an indicator of extreme precipitation events. Atmos Res 92(3):308–317
Naber GL (1992) The geometry of Minkowski spacetime. Springer, New York
Orlanski I (1975) A rational subdivision of scales for atmospheric processes. Bull Am Meteorol Soc 56:517–530
Porebska M, Zdunek M (2013) Analysis of extreme temperature events in Central Europe related to high pressure blocking situations in 2001–2011. Meteorol Z 22(5):533–540
Řezáčová D, Kašpar M, Müller M, Sokol Z, Kakos V, Hanslian D, Pešice P (2005) A comparison of flood precipitation episode in August 2002 with historic extreme precipitation events on the Czech territory. Atmos Res 77(1–4):354–366
Schär C, Vidale PL, Lüthi D, Frei C, Häberli C, Liniger MA, Appenzeller C (2004) The role of increasing temperature variability in European summer heatwaves. Nature 427:332–336
Sokal RR, Rohlf FJ (1962) The comparison of dendrograms by objective methods. Taxon 11:33–40
Štěpánek P, Zahradníček P, Skalák P (2009) Data quality control and homogenization of air temperature and precipitation series in the area of the Czech Republic in the period 1961–2007. Adv Sci Res 3:23–26
Stott PA, Stone DA, Allen MR (2004) Human contribution to the European heatwave of 2003. Nature 432:610–614
Tolasz R, Míková T, Valeriánová A, Voženílek V (eds) (2007) Climate atlas of Czechia. Czech Hydrometeorological Institute, Prague &Univerzita Palackého, Olomouc
Tomczyk AM, Bednorz E (2015) Heat waves in Central Europe and their circulation conditions. Int J Climatol. doi:10.1002/joc.4381
Trewartha GT, Horn LH (1980) Introduction to climate, 5th edn. McGraw Hill, New York, NY
Ward JH (1963) Hierarchical grouping to optimize an objective function. J Am Stat Assoc 58:236–244
The observed data of daily maximum air temperature were provided by the Czech Hydrometeorological Institute. The work has been supported by grant P209/11/1990 funded by the Czech Science Foundation.
About this article
Cite this article
Valeriánová, A., Crhová, L., Holtanová, E. et al. High temperature extremes in the Czech Republic 1961–2010 and their synoptic variants. Theor Appl Climatol 127, 17–29 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00704-015-1614-8
- Return Period
- Heat Wave
- Membership Degree
- Generalize Extreme Value
- Generalize Extreme Value Distribution