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Persistent influence of tropical North Atlantic wintertime sea surface temperature on the subsequent Atlantic hurricane season
  • Published Date:
  • Source:
    Geophysical Research Letters, 44(15), 7927-7935.
Filetype[PDF-1.42 MB]

  • Description:
    This study explores the seasonally lagged impact of wintertime sea surface temperature (SST) in the Atlantic main development region (MDR) on the subsequent Atlantic hurricane season. It is found that wintertime SST anomalies in the MDR can persist into the summer, explaining 42% of the variance in the subsequent hurricane season's SST during 1951-2010. An anomalously warm wintertime in the MDR is usually followed by an anomalously active hurricane season. Analysis shows an important constraint on the seasonal evolution of the MDR SST by the water vapor feedback process, in addition to the well-known wind-evaporation-SST and cloud-SST feedback mechanisms over the tropical North Atlantic. The water vapor feedback influences the seasonal evolution of MDR SST by modulating seasonal variations of downward longwave radiation. This wintertime thermal control of hurricane activity has significant implications for seasonal predictions and long-term projections of hurricane activity over the North Atlantic.
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