Jump to content
  • Stratosphere

    Blessed Weather

    Here are the current Papers & Articles under the research topic Stratosphere. Click on the title of a paper you are interested in to go straight to the full paper.

    The influence of the stratospheric state on North Atlantic weather regimes
    Published March 2018.
    Stratosphere–troposphere coupling is often viewed from the perspective of the annular modes and their dynamics. Despite the obvious benefits of this approach, recent work has emphasised the greater tropospheric sensitivity to stratospheric variability in the Atlantic basin than in the Pacific basin. In this study, a new approach to understanding stratosphere–troposphere coupling is proposed, with a focus on the influence of the stratospheric state on North Atlantic weather regimes (during extended winter, November to March). The influence of the strength of the lower-stratospheric vortex on four commonly used tropospheric weather regimes is quantified. The negative phase of the North Atlantic Oscillation is most sensitive to the stratospheric state, occurring on 33% of days following weak vortex conditions but on only 5% of days following strong vortex conditions. An opposite and slightly weaker sensitivity is found for the positive phase of the North Atlantic Oscillation and the Atlantic Ridge regime. For the North Atlantic Oscillation regimes, stratospheric conditions change both the probability of remaining in each regime and the probability of transitioning to that regime from others. A logistic regression model is developed to further quantify the sensitivity of tropospheric weather regimes to the lower stratospheric state. The logistic regression model predicts an increase of 40–60% in the probability of transition to the negative phase of the North Atlantic Oscillation for a one standard deviation reduction in the strength of the stratospheric vortex. Similarly it predicts a 10–30% increase in the probability of transition to the positive phase of the North Atlantic Oscillation for a one standard deviation increase in the strength of the stratospheric vortex. The stratosphere–troposphere coupling in the European Centre for Medium-range Weather Forecasts Integrated Forecasting System model is found to be consistent with the re-analysis data by fitting the same logistic regression model.

    Stratospheric drivers of extreme events at the Earth’s surface
    Published Dec 2020.
    The stratosphere, the layer of the atmosphere at heights between 10-50 km, is an important source of variability for the weather and climate at the Earth’s surface on timescales of weeks to decades. Since the stratospheric circulation evolves more slowly than that of the troposphere below, it can contribute to predictability at the surface. Our synthesis of studies on the coupling between the stratosphere and the troposphere reveals that the stratosphere also contributes substantially to a wide range of climate-related extreme events. These extreme events include cold air outbreaks and extreme heat, air pollution, wildfires, wind extremes, and storm clusters, as well as changes in tropical cyclones and sea ice cover, and they can have devastating consequences for human health, infrastructure, and ecosystems. A better understanding of the vertical coupling in the atmosphere, along with improved representation in numerical models, is therefore expected to help predict extreme events on timescales from weeks to decades in terms of the event type, magnitude, frequency, location, and timing. With a better understanding of stratosphere-troposphere coupling, it may be possible to link more tropospheric extremes to stratospheric forcing, which will be crucial for emergency planning and management.

    The Dynamic Tropopause and Potential Vorticity: An Introduction
    Explanatory paper by US National Weather Service. No abstract.

    100 Years of Progress in Understanding the Stratosphere and Mesosphere

    The Three-Dimensional Structure of Breaking Rossby Waves in the Polar Wintertime Stratosphere
    Published Nov 2000.
    The three-dimensional nature of breaking Rossby waves in the polar wintertime stratosphere is studied using an idealized global primitive equation model. The model is initialized with a well-formed polar vortex, characterized by a latitudinal band of steep potential vorticity (PV) gradients. Planetary-scale Rossby waves are generated by varying the topography of the bottom boundary, corresponding to undulations of the tropopause. Such topographically forced Rossby waves then propagate up the edge of the vortex, and their amplification with height leads to irreversible wave breaking.
    These numerical experiments highlight several nonlinear aspects of stratospheric dynamics that are beyond the reach of both isentropic two-dimensional models and fully realistic GCM simulations. They also show that the polar vortex is contorted by the breaking Rossby waves in a surprisingly wide range of shapes.
    With zonal wavenumber-1 forcing, wave breaking usually initiates as a deep helical tongue of PV that is extruded from the polar vortex. This tongue is often observed to roll up into deep isolated columns, which, in turn, may be stretched and tilted by horizontal and vertical shears. The wave amplitude directly controls the depth of the wave breaking region and the amount of vortex erosion. At large forcing amplitudes, the wave breaking in the middle/lower portions of the vortex destroys the PV gradients essential for vertical propagation, thus shielding the top of the vortex from further wave breaking.
    The initial vertical structure of the polar vortex is shown to play an important role in determining the characteristics of the wave breaking. Perhaps surprisingly, initially steeper PV gradients allow for stronger vertical wave propagation and thus lead to stronger erosion. Vertical wind shear has the notable effect of tilting and stretching PV structures, and thus dramatically accelerating the downscale stirring. An initial decrease in vortex area with increasing height (i.e., a conical shape) leads to focusing of wave activity, which amplifies the wave breaking. This effect provides a geometric interpretation of the “preconditioning” that often precedes a stratospheric sudden warming event. The implications for stratospheric dynamics of these and other three-dimensional vortex properties are discussed.

    Breaking planetary waves in the stratosphere

    Impact of the Stratosphere on the Winter Tropospheric Teleconnections between ENSO and the North Atlantic and European Region

    Interannual Variations of Total Ozone and Their Relationship to Variations of Planetary Wave Activity

    Northern Hemisphere Stratospheric Pathway of Different El Niño Flavors in Stratosphere-Resolving CMIP5 Models

    Observed and Simulated Teleconnections Between the Stratospheric Quasi‐Biennial Oscillation and Northern Hemisphere Winter Atmospheric Circulation

    Observational Evidence of a Stratospheric Influence on the Troposphere by Planetary Wave Reflection
    2003 paper. Abstract:
    Recent studies have pointed out the impact of the stratosphere on the troposphere by dynamic coupling. In the present paper, observational evidence for an effect of downward planetary wave reflection in the stratosphere on Northern Hemisphere tropospheric waves is given by combining statistical and dynamical diagnostics. A time-lagged singular value decomposition analysis is applied to daily tropospheric and stratospheric height fields recomposed for a single zonal wavenumber. A wave geometry diagnostic for wave propagation characteristics that separates the index of refraction into vertical and meridional components is used to diagnose the occurrence of reflecting surfaces. For zonal wavenumber 1, this study suggests that there is one characteristic configuration of the stratospheric jet that reflects waves back into the troposphere—when the polar night jet peaks in the high-latitude midstratosphere. This configuration is related to the formation of a reflecting surface for vertical propagation at around 5 hPa as a result of the vertical curvature of the zonal-mean wind and a clear meridional waveguide in the lower to middle stratosphere that channels the reflected wave activity to the high-latitude troposphere.

    Separating the stratospheric and tropospheric pathways of El Niño–Southern Oscillation teleconnections

    Stratospheric role in interdecadal changes of El Niño impacts over Europe

    To improve seasonal storm track forecasts, look to the tropical stratosphere

    Varying stratospheric responses to tropical Atlantic SST forcing from early to late winter

    Why CO2 cools the middle atmosphere – a consolidating model perspective
    2016 paper. Abstract:
    Complex models of the atmosphere show that increased carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations, while warming the surface and troposphere, lead to lower temperatures in the stratosphere and mesosphere. This cooling, which is often referred to as “stratospheric cooling”, is evident also in observations and considered to be one of the fingerprints of anthropogenic global warming. Although the responsible mechanisms have been identified, they have mostly been discussed heuristically, incompletely, or in combination with other effects such as ozone depletion, leaving the subject prone to misconceptions. Here we use a one-dimensional window-grey radiation model of the atmosphere to illustrate the physical essence of the mechanisms by which CO2cools the stratosphere and mesosphere: (i) the blocking effect, associated with a cooling due to the fact that CO2absorbsradiation at wavelengths where the atmosphere is already relatively opaque, and (ii) the indirect solar effect,associated with a cooling in places where an additional (solar) heating term is present (which on Earth is particularly the case in the upper parts of the ozone layer). By contrast, in the grey model without solar heating within the atmosphere, the cooling aloft is only a transient blocking phenomenon that is completely compensated as the surface attains its warmer equilibrium. Moreover, we quantify the relative contribution of these effects by simulating the response to an abrupt increase in CO2(and chlorofluorocarbon) concentrations with an atmospheric general circulation model. We find that the two permanent effects contribute roughly equally to the CO2-inducedcooling, with the indirect solar effect dominating around the stratopause and the blocking effect dominating otherwise.


    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments

    There are no comments to display.

    Create an account or sign in to comment

    You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

    Create an account

    Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

    Register a new account

    Sign in

    Already have an account? Sign in here.

    Sign In Now

  • Snow watch on St Andrews Day

    For the last day of November, it wasn't just Scotland seeing the snow showers. Parts of Cornwall had a covering of the white stuff too. More cold air to come. Read the full update here

    Netweather forecasts
    Netweather forecasts
    Latest weather updates from Netweather

    Meteorological Autumn ends in wintry fashion

    A cold picture today, and as we head into the weekend, with widespread overnight frosts, fog along with some sleet and snow - particularly in the north and east, and for today, parts of southern England. Read the full update here

    Netweather forecasts
    Netweather forecasts
    Latest weather updates from Netweather

    Ice and Snow warnings but mostly frost and chilly sunshine

    Snow and Ice warnings for northern Scotland and the Northern Isles, eastern Britain from Aberdeenshire down to Yorkshire. Frosty and getting colder across the UK this week. Read the full update here

    Netweather forecasts
    Netweather forecasts
    Latest weather updates from Netweather
  • Create New...