University Of Tasmania

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Tropical climate variability: interactions across the Pacific, Indian, and Atlantic Oceans

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-20, 04:16 authored by Jules KajtarJules Kajtar, Santoso, A, England, MH, Cai, W
Complex interactions manifest between modes of tropical climate variability across the Pacific, Indian, and Atlantic Oceans. For example, the El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) extends its influence on modes of variability in the tropical Indian and Atlantic Oceans, which in turn feed back onto ENSO. Interactions between pairs of modes can alter their strength, periodicity, seasonality, and ultimately their predictability, yet little is known about the role that a third mode plays. Here we examine the interactions and relative influences between pairs of climate modes using ensembles of 100-year partially coupled experiments in an otherwise fully coupled general circulation model. In these experiments, the air–sea interaction over each tropical ocean basin, as well as pairs of ocean basins, is suppressed in turn. We find that Indian Ocean variability has a net damping effect on ENSO and Atlantic Ocean variability, and conversely they each promote Indian Ocean variability. The connection between the Pacific and the Atlantic is most clearly revealed in the absence of Indian Ocean variability. Our model runs suggest a weak damping influence by Atlantic variability on ENSO, and an enhancing influence by ENSO on Atlantic variability.


Publication title

Climate Dynamics










Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies



Place of publication

175 Fifth Ave, New York, USA, Ny, 10010

Rights statement

Copyright 2016 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Atmospheric processes and dynamics; Climate variability (excl. social impacts)