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Tropical Precipitation Variability and Convectively Coupled Equatorial Waves on...

Kim, J., and M. J. Alexander (2013), Tropical Precipitation Variability and Convectively Coupled Equatorial Waves on Submonthly Time Scales in Reanalyses and TRMM, J. Climate, 26, 3013-3030, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-12-00353.1.

Tropical precipitation characteristics are investigated using the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) 3-hourly estimates, and the result is compared with five reanalyses including the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) Interim Re-Analysis (ERA-Interim), Modern Era Retrospective Analysis for Research and Applications (MERRA), National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP)–National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) reanalysis (NCEP1), NCEP–U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) reanalysis (NCEP2), and NCEP–Climate Forecast System Reanalysis (CFSR). Precipitation characteristics are evaluated in terms of the mean, convectively coupled equatorial wave activity, frequency characteristics, diurnal cycle, and seasonality of regional precipitation variability associated with submonthly scale waves. Generally the latest reanalyses such as ERA-Interim, MERRA, and CFSR show better performances than NCEP1 and NCEP2. However, all the reanalyses are still different from observations. Besides the positive mean bias in the reanalyses, a spectral analysis revealed that the reanalyses have overreddened spectra with persistent rainfall. MERRA has the most persistent rainfall, and CFSR appears to have the most realistic variability. The diurnal cycle in NCEP1 is extremely exaggerated relative to TRMM. The low-frequency waves with the period longer than 3 days are relatively well represented in ERAInterim, MERRA, and CFSR, but all the reanalyses have significant deficiencies in representing convectively coupled equatorial waves and variability in the high-frequency range.

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Atmospheric Composition Modeling and Analysis Program (ACMAP)