Modulation of western North Pacific tropical cyclone activity by the Atlantic Meridional Mode

Wei Zhang, Gabriel Andres Vecchi, Gabriele Villarini, Hiroyuki Murakami, Anthony Rosati, Xiaosong Yang, Liwei Jia, Fanrong Zeng

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This study examines the year-to-year modulation of the western North Pacific (WNP) tropical cyclones (TC) activity by the Atlantic Meridional Mode (AMM) using both observations and the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory Forecast-oriented Low Ocean Resolution Version of CM2.5 (FLOR) global coupled model. 1. The positive (negative) AMM phase suppresses (enhances) WNP TC activity in observations. The anomalous occurrence of WNP TCs results mainly from changes in TC genesis in the southeastern part of the WNP. 2. The observed responses of WNP TC activity to the AMM are connected to the anomalous zonal vertical wind shear (ZVWS) caused by AMM-induced changes to the Walker circulation. During the positive AMM phase, the warming in the North Atlantic induces strong descending flow in the tropical eastern and central Pacific, which intensifies the Walker cell in the WNP. The intensified Walker cell is responsible for the suppressed (enhanced) TC genesis in the eastern (western) part of the WNP by strengthening (weakening) ZVWS. 3. The observed WNPTC–AMM linkage is examined by the long-term control and idealized perturbations experiment with FLOR-FA. A suite of sensitivity experiments strongly corroborate the observed WNPTC–AMM linkage and underlying physical mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)631-647
Number of pages17
JournalClimate Dynamics
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Atmospheric Science


  • Atlantic Meridional Mode
  • Tropical cyclone
  • Western North Pacific


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