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North Atlantic Oscillation impact on tropical north Atlantic winter atmospheric variability

George, SE; Saunders, MA; (2001) North Atlantic Oscillation impact on tropical north Atlantic winter atmospheric variability. Geophysical Research Letters , 28 (6) 1015 - 1018. 10.1029/2000GL012449. Green open access

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Abstract

The dominant mode of windspeed variability in the wintertime tropical north Atlantic (TNA) is represented by the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). For the December-January-February (DJF) season the leading principal component of TNA windspeed (representing 46% of the total variance) exhibits a 0.68 correlation with the NAO time-series. We show that the NAO impact on TNA trade winds peaks in January and is statistically significant at the 99% level for each month from November through to April. This association arises through the meridional pressure gradient equatorward of the Azores high pressure covarying with the NAG. We also show that the winter NAO index determines monthly precipitation levels across the northern Caribbean throughout the following year. We suggest this rainfall impact is due to long lasting, DJF forced perturbations to the north Atlantic sea surface temperature tripole characteristic of the NAO signal.

Type: Article
Title: North Atlantic Oscillation impact on tropical north Atlantic winter atmospheric variability
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1029/2000GL012449
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2000GL012449
Additional information: Copyright 2001 by the American Geophysical Union
Keywords: Climate, Patterns
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Dept of Space and Climate Physics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/154992
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