On the warming in the tropical upper troposphere: Models versus observations

Qiang Fu, Syukuro Manabe, Celeste M. Johanson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

70 Scopus citations

Abstract

IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) AR4 (Fourth Assessment Report) GCMs (General Circulation Models) predict a tropical tropospheric warming that increases with height, reaches its maximum at ∼200 hPa, and decreases to zero near the tropical tropopause. This study examines the GCM-predicted maximum warming in the tropical upper troposphere using satellite MSU (microwave sounding unit)-derived deep-layer temperatures in the tropical upper-and lower-middle troposphere for 1979-2010. While satellite MSU/AMSU observations generally support GCM results with tropical deep-layer tropospheric warming faster than surface, it is evident that the AR4 GCMs exaggerate the increase in static stability between tropical middle and upper troposphere during the last three decades.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberL15704
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume38
Issue number15
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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