S42 An Evaluation and Analysis of a New Monthly Atmospheric Pressure Dataset for Antarctica Since 1957

Sunday, 7 January 2018
Exhibit Hall 5 (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
Logan N Clark, Ohio University, Athens, OH; and R. L. Fogt

Antarctica is a very unique continent and has one of the more complex climates that is less studied and not as well known compared to others globally. A large portion of our current understanding of climate variability in Antarctica is obtained from changes in the Southern Annular Mode (SAM). Recent studies have shown that regional circulation changes as well as teleconnections from the tropics have played a key role in the warming trends in Western Antarctica. To fully understand atmospheric circulations, studying the atmospheric pressure pattern is important. However, valuable datasets over the entire Antarctic continent are only available with a starting date of 1979, coincident with the beginning of the modern satellite era. To improve on earlier reconstructions, a new dataset with monthly resolution was created for Antarctic pressure anomalies by interpolating station observations. The interpolation was performed using a kriging algorithm, successfully employed for previous temperature and snowfall reconstructions across Antarctica. The model is based on the pressure covariance structure across Antarctica from the ERA-Interim reanalysis, as well as the covariance between Antarctic stations. This new dataset is evaluated to other available datasets, and is found to be in good comparison after 1979, and with smaller and more physically realistic trends prior to 1979, suggesting an improvement from earlier available datasets. The poster will provide an assessment of this new dataset, and will also demonstrate unique aspects of Antarctic climate variability and change since 1957 at monthly and seasonal timescales, providing a much longer history than previously realized.
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