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Observed interannual relationship between ITCZ position and tropical cyclone frequency

Liao, X., Holloway, C. E. ORCID:, Feng, X. ORCID:, Liu, C., Lyu, X., Xue, Y., Bao, R., Li, J. and Qiao, F. (2023) Observed interannual relationship between ITCZ position and tropical cyclone frequency. Journal of Climate, 36 (16). pp. 5587-5603. ISSN 1520-0442

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1175/JCLI-D-22-0865.1


There are no well accepted mechanisms that can explain the annual frequency of tropical cyclones (TCs) both globally and in individual ocean basins. Recent studies using idealized models showed that the climatological frequency of TC genesis (TCG) is proportional to the Coriolis parameter associated with the intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ) position. In this study, we investigate the effect of the ITCZ position on TCG on the interannual time scale using observations over 1979-2020. Our results show that the TCG frequency is significantly correlated with the ITCZ position in the North Atlantic (NA) and Western North Pacific (WNP), with more TCG events in years when the ITCZ is further poleward. The ITCZ-TCG relationship in NA is dominated by TCG events in the tropics (0-20°N), while the relationship in WNP is due to TCs formed in the east sector (140-180°E). We further confirmed that the ENSO has little effect on the ITCZ-TCG relationship despite it can affects the ITCZ position and TCG frequency separately. In NA and WNP, a poleward shift of ITCZ is significantly associated with large-scale environment changes favoring TCG in the Main Development Region (MDR), However, the basin-wide TCG frequency has a weak relationship with the ITCZ in other ocean basins. We showed that a poleward ITCZ in Eastern North Pacific and South Pacific favors TCG on the poleward flank of MDR, whilst it suppresses TCG on the equatorward flank, leading to insignificant change in basin-wide TCG frequency. In the South Indian Ocean, the ITCZ position has weak effect on TCG frequency due to mixed influences of environmental conditions.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > NCAS
Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:111666
Publisher:American Meteorological Society


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