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Euro-Atlantic weather regimes in the PRIMAVERA coupled climate simulations: impact of resolution and mean state biases on model performance

Fabiano, F., Christensen, H. M., Strommen, K., Athanasiadis, P., Baker, A. ORCID:, Schiemann, R. ORCID: and Corti, S. (2020) Euro-Atlantic weather regimes in the PRIMAVERA coupled climate simulations: impact of resolution and mean state biases on model performance. Climate Dynamics, 54 (11-12). pp. 5031-5048. ISSN 0930-7575

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1007/s00382-020-05271-w


Recently, much attention has been devoted to better understand the internal modes of variability of the climate system. This is particularly important in mid-latitude regions like the North-Atlantic, which is characterized by a large natural variability and is intrinsically difficult to predict. A suitable framework for studying the modes of variability of the atmospheric circulation is to look for recurrent patterns, commonly referred to as Weather Regimes. Each regime is characterized by a specific large-scale atmospheric circulation pattern, thus influencing regional weather and extremes over Europe. The focus of the present paper is the study of the Euro-Atlantic wintertime Weather Regimes in the climate models participating to the PRIMAVERA project. We analyse here the set of coupled historical simulations (hist-1950), which have been performed both at standard and increased resolution, following the HighresMIP protocol. The models’ performance in reproducing the observed Weather Regimes is assessed in terms of different metrics, focussing on systematic biases and on the impact of resolution. We also analyse the connection of the Weather Regimes with the Jet Stream latitude and blocking frequency over the North-Atlantic sector. We find that—for most models—the regime patterns are better represented in the higher resolution version, for all regimes but the NAO-. On the other side, no clear impact of resolution is seen on the regime frequency of occurrence and persistence. Also, for most models, the regimes tend to be more tightly clustered in the increased resolution simulations, more closely resembling the observed ones. However, the horizontal resolution is not the only factor determining the model performance, and we find some evidence that biases in the SSTs and mean geopotential field might also play a role.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:91142
Uncontrolled Keywords:Article, Climate models, Atmospheric dynamics, Mid-latitudes, Weather regimes, North Atlantic, HighresMIP, Modes of variability


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