J31.4 A Simple Framework for Understanding Slow, Convectively Coupled Circulations

Tuesday, 14 January 2020: 3:45 PM
205B (Boston Convention and Exhibition Center)
Kerry Emanuel, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA

I will present a remarkably simple framework for analyzing and understanding slow tropical circulations including the Walker circulation, the MJO, and equatorial Rossby waves. This framework also provides an alternative explanation of the observed relationship between precipitation and column integrated water vapor in the tropics and can be extended to include faster oscillations such as Kelvin waves and Yanai waves. The basic elements of the framework are boundary layer quasi-equilibrium, the weak-temperature-gradient approximation, and column moist and dry static energy budgets.
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