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Tim Li

Bio: Tim Li is an academic researcher from Nanjing University of Information Science and Technology. The author has contributed to research in topic(s): Sea surface temperature & Tropical cyclone. The author has an hindex of 67, co-authored 383 publication(s) receiving 16370 citation(s). Previous affiliations of Tim Li include Naval Postgraduate School & Princeton University.
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Journal ArticleDOI
Chih-Pei Chang1, Yongsheng Zhang1, Tim Li1Institutions (1)
Abstract: The interannual relationship between the East Asian summer monsoon and the tropical Pacific SSTs is studied using rainfall data in the Yangtze River Valley and the NCEP reanalysis for 1951‐96. The datasets are also partitioned into two periods, 1951‐77 and 1978‐96, to study the interdecadal variations of this relationship. A wet summer monsoon is preceded by a warm equatorial eastern Pacific in the previous winter and followed by a cold equatorial eastern Pacific in the following fall. This relationship involves primarily the rainfall during the pre-Mei-yu/Mei-yu season (May‐June) but not the post-Mei-yu season (July‐August). In a wet monsoon year, the western North Pacific subtropical ridge is stronger as a result of positive feedback that involves the anomalous Hadley and Walker circulations, an atmospheric Rossby wave response to the western Pacific complementary cooling, and the evaporation‐wind feedback. This ridge extends farther to the west from the previous winter to the following fall, resulting in an 850-hPa anomalous anticyclone near the southeast coast of China. This anticyclone 1) blocks the pre-Mei-yu and Mei-yu fronts from moving southward thereby extending the time that the fronts produce stationary rainfall; 2) enhances the pressure gradient to its northwest resulting in a more intense front; and 3) induces anomalous warming of the South China Sea surface through increased downwelling, which leads to a higher moisture supply to the rain area. A positive feedback from the strong monsoon rainfall also appears to occur, leading to an intensified anomalous anticyclone near the monsoon region. This SST‐subtropical ridge‐monsoon rainfall relationship is observed in both the interannual timescale within each interdecadal period and in the interdecadal scale. The SST anomalies (SSTAs) change sign in northern spring and resemble a tropospheric biennial oscillation (TBO) pattern during the first interdecadal period (1951‐77). In the second interdecadal period (1978‐96) the sign change occurs in northern fall and the TBO pattern in the equatorial eastern Pacific SST is replaced by longer timescales. This interdecadal variation of the monsoon‐SST relationship results from the interdecadal change of the background state of the coupled ocean‐atmosphere system. This difference gives rise to the different degrees of importance of the feedback from the anomalous circulations near the monsoon region to the equatorial eastern Pacific. In a wet monsoon year, the anomalous easterly winds south of the monsoon-enhanced anomalous anticyclone start to propagate slowly eastward toward the eastern Pacific in May and June, apparently as a result of an atmosphere‐ocean coupled wave motion. These anomalous easterlies carry with them a cooling effect on the ocean surface. In 1951‐77 this effect is insignificant as the equatorial eastern Pacific SSTAs, already change from warm to cold in northern spring, probably as a result of negative feedback processes discussed in ENSO mechanisms. In 1978‐96 the equatorial eastern Pacific has a warmer mean SST. A stronger positive feedback between SSTA and the Walker circulation during a warm phase tends to keep the SSTA warm until northern fall, when the eastward-propagating anomalous easterly winds reach the eastern Pacific and reverse the SSTA.

687 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Bin Wang1, Renguang Wu1, Tim Li1Institutions (1)
Abstract: Asian–Australian monsoon (A–AM) anomalies depend strongly on phases of El Nino (La Nina). Based on this distinctive feature, a method of extended singular value decomposition analysis was developed to analyze the changing characteristics of A–AM anomalies during El Nino (La Nina) from its development to decay. Two off-equatorial surface anticyclones dominate the A–AM anomalies during an El Nino—one over the south Indian Ocean (SIO) and the other over the western North Pacific (WNP). The SIO anticyclone, which affects climate conditions over the Indian Ocean, eastern Africa, and India, originates during the summer of a growing El Nino, rapidly reaches its peak intensity in fall, and decays when El Nino matures. The WNP anticyclone, on the other hand, forms in fall, attains maximum intensity after El Nino matures, and persists through the subsequent spring and summer, providing a prolonged impact on the WNP and east Asian climate. The monsoon anomalies associated with a La Nina resemble those durin...

595 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Samuel Philander1, Daifang Gu1, G. Lambert1, Tim Li1  +3 moreInstitutions (2)
Abstract: Although the distribution of sunshine is symmetrical about the equator, the earth's climate is not. Climatic asymmetries are prominent in the eastern tropical Pacific and Atlantic Oceans where the regions of maximum sea surface temperature, convective cloud cover, and rainfall are north of the equator. This is the result of two sets of factors: interactions between the ocean and atmosphere that are capable of converting symmetry into asymmetry, and the geometries of the continents that determine in which longitudes the interactions are effective and in which hemisphere the warmest waters and the intertropical convergence zone are located. 'The Ocean-atmosphere interactions are most effective where the thermocline is shallow because the winds can readily affect sea surface temperatures in such regions. The thermocline happens to shoal in the eastern equatorial Pacific and Atlantic, but not in the eastern Indian Ocean, because easterly trade winds prevail over the tropical Atlantic and Pacific wher...

479 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Xianan Jiang1, Tim Li1, Bin Wang1Institutions (1)
Abstract: The spatial and temporal structures of the northward-propagating boreal summer intraseasonal oscillation (BSISO) are revealed based on the analysis of both the ECHAM4 model simulation and the NCEP–NCAR reanalysis. The BSISO structure and evolution characteristics simulated by the model bear many similarities to those derived from the NCEP–NCAR reanalysis. The most notable features are the remarkable meridional asymmetries, relative to the BSISO convection, in the vorticity and specific humidity fields. A positive vorticity perturbation with an equivalent barotropic structure appears a few latitude degrees north of the convection center. The maximum specific humidity also shows a clear northward shift in the lower troposphere. Two internal atmospheric dynamics mechanisms are proposed to understand the cause of the northward propagation of the BSISO. The first is the vertical shear mechanism. The key process associated with this mechanism is the generation of barotropic vorticity due to the couplin...

428 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Axel Timmermann1, Axel Timmermann2, Soon Il An3, Jong-Seong Kug4  +47 moreInstitutions (33)
26 Jul 2018-Nature
TL;DR: A synopsis of the current understanding of the spatio-temporal complexity of this important climate mode and its influence on the Earth system is provided and a unifying framework that identifies the key factors for this complexity is proposed.
Abstract: El Nino events are characterized by surface warming of the tropical Pacific Ocean and weakening of equatorial trade winds that occur every few years Such conditions are accompanied by changes in atmospheric and oceanic circulation, affecting global climate, marine and terrestrial ecosystems, fisheries and human activities The alternation of warm El Nino and cold La Nina conditions, referred to as the El Nino–Southern Oscillation (ENSO), represents the strongest year-to-year fluctuation of the global climate system Here we provide a synopsis of our current understanding of the spatio-temporal complexity of this important climate mode and its influence on the Earth system

359 citations

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Abstract: Cause, conseguenze e strategie di mitigazione Proponiamo il primo di una serie di articoli in cui affronteremo l’attuale problema dei mutamenti climatici. Presentiamo il documento redatto, votato e pubblicato dall’Ipcc - Comitato intergovernativo sui cambiamenti climatici - che illustra la sintesi delle ricerche svolte su questo tema rilevante.

3,967 citations

01 Jan 1989
Abstract: Abstract A two-dimensional version of the Pennsylvania State University mesoscale model has been applied to Winter Monsoon Experiment data in order to simulate the diurnally occurring convection observed over the South China Sea. The domain includes a representation of part of Borneo as well as the sea so that the model can simulate the initiation of convection. Also included in the model are parameterizations of mesoscale ice phase and moisture processes and longwave and shortwave radiation with a diurnal cycle. This allows use of the model to test the relative importance of various heating mechanisms to the stratiform cloud deck, which typically occupies several hundred kilometers of the domain. Frank and Cohen's cumulus parameterization scheme is employed to represent vital unresolved vertical transports in the convective area. The major conclusions are: Ice phase processes are important in determining the level of maximum large-scale heating and vertical motion because there is a strong anvil componen...

3,813 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Abstract: The fourth version of the Community Climate System Model (CCSM4) was recently completed and released to the climate community. This paper describes developments to all CCSM components, and documents fully coupled preindustrial control runs compared to the previous version, CCSM3. Using the standard atmosphere and land resolution of 1° results in the sea surface temperature biases in the major upwelling regions being comparable to the 1.4°-resolution CCSM3. Two changes to the deep convection scheme in the atmosphere component result in CCSM4 producing El Nino–Southern Oscillation variability with a much more realistic frequency distribution than in CCSM3, although the amplitude is too large compared to observations. These changes also improve the Madden–Julian oscillation and the frequency distribution of tropical precipitation. A new overflow parameterization in the ocean component leads to an improved simulation of the Gulf Stream path and the North Atlantic Ocean meridional overturning circulati...

2,549 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Abstract: Whether the characteristics of tropical cyclones have altered, or will alter, in a changing climate has been subject of considerable debate. An overview of recent research indicates that greenhouse warming will cause stronger storms, on average, but a decrease in the frequency of tropical cyclones. Whether the characteristics of tropical cyclones have changed or will change in a warming climate — and if so, how — has been the subject of considerable investigation, often with conflicting results. Large amplitude fluctuations in the frequency and intensity of tropical cyclones greatly complicate both the detection of long-term trends and their attribution to rising levels of atmospheric greenhouse gases. Trend detection is further impeded by substantial limitations in the availability and quality of global historical records of tropical cyclones. Therefore, it remains uncertain whether past changes in tropical cyclone activity have exceeded the variability expected from natural causes. However, future projections based on theory and high-resolution dynamical models consistently indicate that greenhouse warming will cause the globally averaged intensity of tropical cyclones to shift towards stronger storms, with intensity increases of 2–11% by 2100. Existing modelling studies also consistently project decreases in the globally averaged frequency of tropical cyclones, by 6–34%. Balanced against this, higher resolution modelling studies typically project substantial increases in the frequency of the most intense cyclones, and increases of the order of 20% in the precipitation rate within 100 km of the storm centre. For all cyclone parameters, projected changes for individual basins show large variations between different modelling studies.

2,144 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Abstract: [1] Using observed data sets mainly for the period 1979–2005, we find that anomalous warming events different from conventional El Nino events occur in the central equatorial Pacific. This unique warming in the central equatorial Pacific associated with a horseshoe pattern is flanked by a colder sea surface temperature anomaly (SSTA) on both sides along the equator. empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analysis of monthly tropical Pacific SSTA shows that these events are represented by the second mode that explains 12% of the variance. Since a majority of such events are not part of El Nino evolution, the phenomenon is named as El Nino Modoki (pseudo-El Nino) (“Modoki” is a classical Japanese word, which means “a similar but different thing”). The El Nino Modoki involves ocean-atmosphere coupled processes which include a unique tripolar sea level pressure pattern during the evolution, analogous to the Southern Oscillation in the case of El Nino. Hence the total entity is named as El Nino–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) Modoki. The ENSO Modoki events significantly influence the temperature and precipitation over many parts of the globe. Depending on the season, the impacts over regions such as the Far East including Japan, New Zealand, western coast of United States, etc., are opposite to those of the conventional ENSO. The difference maps between the two periods of 1979–2004 and 1958–1978 for various oceanic/atmospheric variables suggest that the recent weakening of equatorial easterlies related to weakened zonal sea surface temperature gradient led to more flattening of the thermocline. This appears to be a cause of more frequent and persistent occurrence of the ENSO Modoki event during recent decades.

2,052 citations

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Author's H-index: 67

No. of papers from the Author in previous years