Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2021-206
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2021-206

  29 Mar 2021

29 Mar 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

The Brewer-Dobson circulation in CMIP6

Marta Abalos1, Natalia Calvo1, Samuel Benito-Barca1, Hella Garny2, Steven C. Hardiman3, Pu Lin4,5, Martin B. Andrews6, Neal Butchart6, Rolando Garcia7, Clara Orbe8, David Saint-Martin9, Shingo Watanabe10, and Kohei Yoshida11 Marta Abalos et al.
  • 1Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Madrid, Spain
  • 2Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR), Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany
  • 3Met Office, Exeter, United Kingdom
  • 4NOAA/Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, Princeton, NJ, USA
  • 5Program in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, USA
  • 6Met Office Hadley Centre, Exeter, UK
  • 7National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO, USA
  • 8NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, New York, NY, USA
  • 9Centre National de Recherches Météorologiques, Toulouse, France
  • 10Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC), Yokohama, Japan
  • 11Meteorological Research Institute, Tsukuba, Japan

Abstract. The Brewer-Dobson circulation (BDC) is a key feature of the stratosphere that models need to accurately represent in order to improve the representation of surface climate variability. For the first time, the Climate Model Intercomparison Project includes in its phase 6 (CMIP6) a set of diagnostics that allow for careful evaluation of the BDC. Here, the BDC is evaluated against observations and reanalyses using historical simulations. CMIP6 results confirm the well-known inconsistency in BDC trends between observations and models in the middle and upper stratosphere. The increasing CO2 simulations feature a robust acceleration of the BDC but also reveal large uncertainties in the deep branch trends. The very close connection between the shallow branch and surface temperature is highlighted, which is absent in the deep branch. The trends in mean age of air are shown to be more robust throughout the stratosphere than those in the residual circulation. The paper reflects the current knowledge and main uncertainties regarding the BDC.

Marta Abalos et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • CC1: 'Comment on acp-2021-206', Simon Chabrillat, 30 Mar 2021
    • AC1: 'Reply to CC1', Marta Abalos, 10 May 2021
  • CC2: 'Comment on acp-2021-206', Petr Šácha, 30 Mar 2021
    • AC2: 'Reply on CC2', Marta Abalos, 17 May 2021
      • CC3: 'Reply on AC2', Petr Šácha, 20 May 2021
        • AC3: 'Reply on CC3', Marta Abalos, 20 May 2021
          • CC4: 'Thank you.', Petr Šácha, 20 May 2021
  • RC1: 'Comment on acp-2021-206', Anonymous Referee #1, 25 Apr 2021
  • RC2: 'Comment on acp-2021-206', Edwin Gerber, 10 May 2021
  • RC3: 'Comment on acp-2021-206', Anonymous Referee #3, 12 May 2021

Marta Abalos et al.

Marta Abalos et al.

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Short summary
A set of state-of-the-art climate models is used to evaluate the stratospheric Brewer-Dobson circulation (BDC), the meridional circulation responsible of transporting tracers and heat globally in the stratosphere. The acceleration of the BDC in response to increasing greenhouse gases is found to be much more robust in the lower stratosphere than at higher levels, where the inconsistency with observational estimates of the BDC trends persists.
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