Unusual central Indian drought of summer monsoon - 2008: Role of Southern Tropical Indian Ocean warming

Rao, Suryachandra A. ; Chaudhari, H. S. ; Pokhrel, S. ; Goswami, B. N. (2008) Unusual central Indian drought of summer monsoon - 2008: Role of Southern Tropical Indian Ocean warming Journal of Climate, 23 (19). pp. 5163-5174. ISSN 0894-8755

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Official URL: http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/2010JC...

Related URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/2010JCLI3257.1


While many of the previous positive Indian Ocean dipole (IOD) years were associated with above (below)-normal monsoon rainfall over central (southern) India during summer monsoon months [June-September (JJAS)], the IOD event in 2008 is associated with below (above)-normal rainfall in many parts of central (southern peninsular) India. Because understanding such regional organization is a key for success in regional prediction, using different datasets and atmospheric model simulations, the reasons for this abnormal behavior of the monsoon in 2008 are explored. Compared to normal positive IOD events, sea surface temperature (SST) and rainfall in the southern tropical Indian Ocean (STIO) in JJAS 2008 were abnormally high. Downwelling Rossby waves and oceanic heat advection played an important role in warming SST abnormally in the STIO. It was also found that the combined influence of a linear warming trend in the tropical Indian Ocean and warming associated with the IOD have resulted in abnormal warming of the STIO. This abnormal SST warming resulted in enhancement of convection in the southwest tropical Indian Ocean and forced anticyclonic circulation anomalies over the Bay of Bengal and central India, leading to suppressed rainfall over this region in JJAS 2008. The above mechanism is tested by conducting several model sensitivity experiments with an atmospheric general circulation model (AGCM). These experiments confirmed that the subsidence over central India and the Bay of Bengal was forced mainly by the anomalous warming in the STIO region driven by coupled ocean-atmosphere processes. This study provides the first evidence of combined Indian Ocean warming, associated with global warming, and IOD-related warming influence on Indian summer monsoon rainfall. The combined influence may force below-normal rainfall over central India by inducing strong convection in the STIO region. The conventional seesaw in convection between the Indian subcontinent and the eastern equatorial Indian Ocean may shift to the central equatorial Indian Ocean and the Bay of Bengal if the central Indian Ocean consistently warms in the global warming scenario.

Item Type:Article
Source:Copyright of this article belongs to American Meteorological Society.
Keywords:Monsoons; Droughts; Indian Ocean; Sea Surface Temperature; Rainfall; Regional Effects; Subsidence
ID Code:93595
Deposited On:22 Jun 2012 04:43
Last Modified:19 May 2016 06:39

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