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Meridional Wind Stress Anomalies over the Tropical Pacific and the Onset of El Ni?o Part Ⅱ: Dynamical Analysis


doi: 10.1007/s00376-001-0022-4

  • The data analyses in the first part of this study have shown that the sea surface temperature anomalies (SSTA) in the eastern equatorial Pacific are significantly correlated with the preceding anomalous convergence of the meridional wind stress near the equator. In order to understand the dynamical role of the convergent meridional wind stress anomalies in the El Nino occurring, an ideal wind stress which converges about the equator is set up based on the observations revealed in the first part. A simple dynamical model of tropical ocean is used to study the response of the tropical ocean to the convergent meridional wind stress. The results show that the convergent wind stress in the eastern equatorial Pacific is favorable for the occurrence of El Nino. When the convergent wind stress exerts on the tropical ocean, the westward propagating Rossby wave is excited, which, on the one hand, makes the mixed layer near the equator become thicker. On the other hand, the westward oceanic currents associated with the Rossby wave appear in the vicinity of the equator. The oceanic currents can drive the upper layer sea water to transfer to the west, which is favorable for the sea water to pile up in the western equatorial Pacific and to accumulate energy for the upcoming warm event.
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Manuscript History

Manuscript received: 10 November 2001
Manuscript revised: 10 November 2001
通讯作者: 陈斌, bchen63@163.com
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Meridional Wind Stress Anomalies over the Tropical Pacific and the Onset of El Ni?o Part Ⅱ: Dynamical Analysis

  • 1. LASG, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029,LASG, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029

Abstract: The data analyses in the first part of this study have shown that the sea surface temperature anomalies (SSTA) in the eastern equatorial Pacific are significantly correlated with the preceding anomalous convergence of the meridional wind stress near the equator. In order to understand the dynamical role of the convergent meridional wind stress anomalies in the El Nino occurring, an ideal wind stress which converges about the equator is set up based on the observations revealed in the first part. A simple dynamical model of tropical ocean is used to study the response of the tropical ocean to the convergent meridional wind stress. The results show that the convergent wind stress in the eastern equatorial Pacific is favorable for the occurrence of El Nino. When the convergent wind stress exerts on the tropical ocean, the westward propagating Rossby wave is excited, which, on the one hand, makes the mixed layer near the equator become thicker. On the other hand, the westward oceanic currents associated with the Rossby wave appear in the vicinity of the equator. The oceanic currents can drive the upper layer sea water to transfer to the west, which is favorable for the sea water to pile up in the western equatorial Pacific and to accumulate energy for the upcoming warm event.

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