Changes in the characteristics of rain events in India

Dash, S. K. ; Kulkarni, Makarand A. ; Mohanty, U. C. ; Prasad, K. (2009) Changes in the characteristics of rain events in India Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 114 . No pp. given. ISSN 0148-0227

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Daily gridded (1° × 1°) rainfall data prepared by the India Meteorological Department for the period 1951-2004 have been used in this study to examine possible changes in the frequency of rain events in India in terms of their duration and intensity per day. So far as the duration is concerned, a rain event is classified as short, long, dry, or prolonged dry spell. Similarly in terms of intensity, a rainy day is considered as low, moderate, or heavy. Changes in the frequency of these events have great relevance from the point of view of climate change. Threshold and limiting values for defining the heavy and moderate rain days are calculated in accordance with the gamma probability distribution. Results show that the frequencies of moderate and low rain days considered over the entire country have significantly decreased in the last half century. On the basis of the duration of rain events it is inferred that long spells show a significant decreasing trend over India as a whole while short and dry spells indicate an increasing tendency with 5% significance. The characteristics of rain events are also examined over six homogenous rainfall zones separately since the spatial distribution of rainfall over India shows large variability. In this study, the changes in the frequencies of different categories of rain events suggest weakening of the summer monsoon circulation over India. This hypothesis of a weakening of monsoon circulation is supported by significant reduction in the 850 hPa wind fields in the National Centers for Environmental Prediction/National Center for Atmospheric Research reanalyzed data set.

Item Type:Article
Source:Copyright of this article belongs to American Geophysical Union.
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Deposited On:08 Dec 2010 13:29
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