A dipole mode in the tropical Indian ocean

Saji, N. H. ; Goswami, Bhupendra Nath ; Vinayachandran, Puthenveettil NarayanaMenon ; Yamagata, T. (1999) A dipole mode in the tropical Indian ocean Nature, 401 (6751). pp. 360-363. ISSN 0028-0836

Full text not available from this repository.

Official URL: http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v401/n6751/ab...


For the tropical Pacific and Atlantic oceans, internal modes of variability that lead to climatic oscillations have been recognized but in the Indian Ocean region a similar ocean-atmosphere interaction causing interannual climate variability has not yet been found. Here we report an analysis of observational data over the past 40 years, showing a dipole mode in the Indian Ocean: a pattern of internal variability with anomalously low sea surface temperatures off Sumatra and high sea surface temperatures in the western Indian Ocean, with accompanying wind and precipitation anomalies. The spatio-temporal links between sea surface temperatures and winds reveal a strong coupling through the precipitation field and ocean dynamics. This air-sea interaction process is unique and inherent in the Indian Ocean, and is shown to be independent of the El Nino/Southern Oscillation. The discovery of this dipole mode that accounts for about 12% of the sea surface temperature variability in the Indian Ocean-and, in its active years, also causes severe rainfall in eastern Africa and droughts in Indonesia-brightens the prospects for a long-term forecast of rainfall anomalies in the affected countries.

Item Type:Article
Source:Copyright of this article belongs to Nature Publishing Group.
ID Code:23838
Deposited On:01 Dec 2010 13:03
Last Modified:17 Sep 2011 08:43

Repository Staff Only: item control page