Articles | Volume 19, issue 17
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 11383–11399, 2019
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 11383–11399, 2019

Research article 10 Sep 2019

Research article | 10 Sep 2019

A double ITCZ phenomenology of wind errors in the equatorial Atlantic in seasonal forecasts with ECMWF models

Jonathan K. P. Shonk et al.

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Cited articles

Balmaseda, M. A., Mogensen, K., and Weaver, A. T.: Evaluation of the ECMWF Ocean Reanalysis System ORAS4, Q. J. Roy. Meteorol. Soc. 139, 1132–1161. 2013. 
Breugem, W. P., Chang, P., Jang, C. J., Mignot, J., and Hazeleger, W.: Barrier Layers and Tropical Atlantic SST Biases in Coupled GCMs, Tellus A, 60, 885–897, 2008. 
Carvalho, L. M. V., Jones, C., Silva, A. E., Liebmann, B., and Silva Dias, P. L.: The South American Monsoon System and the 1970s Climate Transition, Int. J. Climatol., 31, 1238–1256, 2011. 
Chang, C. Y., Carton, J. A., Grodsky, S. A., and Nigam, S.: Seasonal Climate of the Tropical Atlantic Sector in the NCAR Community Climate System Model 3: Error Structure and Probable Causes of Errors, J. Climate, 20, 1053–1070, 2007. 
Chang, C. Y., Nigam, S., and Carton, J. A.: Origin of the Springtime Westerly Bias in Equatorial Atlantic Surface Winds in the Community Atmosphere Model Version 3 (CAM3) Simulation, J. Climate, 21, 4766–4778, 2008. 
Short summary
Modern climate models are affected by systematic biases that harm their ability to produce reliable seasonal forecasts and climate projections. In this study, we investigate causes of biases in wind patterns over the tropical Atlantic during northern spring in three related models. We find that the wind biases are associated with an increase in excess rainfall and convergence in the tropical western Atlantic at the start of April, leading to the redirection of trade winds away from the Equator.
Final-revised paper