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The effect of horizontal resolution on the representation of the global monsoon annual cycle in Atmospheric General Circulation Models

Zhang, L., Zhou, T., Klingaman, N. P., Wu, P. and Roberts, M. (2018) The effect of horizontal resolution on the representation of the global monsoon annual cycle in Atmospheric General Circulation Models. Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, 35 (8). pp. 1003-1020. ISSN 0256-1530

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1007/s00376-018-7273-9

Abstract/Summary

The sensitivity of the representation of the global monsoon annual cycle to horizontal resolution is compared in three Atmospheric General Circulation Models (AGCMs): the Met Office Unified Model-Global Atmosphere 3.0 (MetUM-GA3), the Meteorological Research Institute AGCM3 (MRI-AGCM3) and Global High Resolution AGCM from the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL-HiRAM). For each model, we use two horizontal resolution configurations for the period 1998–2008. Increasing resolution consistently improves simulated precipitation and low-level circulation of the annual mean and the first two annual cycle modes, as measured by pattern correlation coefficient and Equitable Threat Score. Improvements in simulating the summer monsoon onset and withdrawal are region-dependent. No consistent response to resolution is found in simulating summer monsoon retreat. Regionally, increased resolution reduces the positive bias in simulated annual mean precipitation, the two annual-cycle modes over the West African monsoon and Northwestern Pacific monsoon. An overestimation of the solstitial mode and an underestimation of the equinoctial asymmetric mode of the East Asian monsoon are reduced in all high-resolution configurations. Systematic errors exist in lower-resolution models for simulating the onset and withdrawal of the summer monsoon. Higher resolution models consistently improve the early summer monsoon onset over East Asia and West Africa, but substantial differences exist in the responses over Indian monsoon region, where biases differ across the three low-resolution AGCMs. This study demonstrates the importance of a multi-model comparison when examining the added value of resolution and the importance of model physical parameterizations for the Indian monsoon simulation.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > NCAS
Faculty of Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:75426
Publisher:Science Press, co-published with Springer

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