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Earth System Dynamics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union

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doi:10.5194/esd-2017-1
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
26 Jan 2017
Review status
This discussion paper is under review for the journal Earth System Dynamics (ESD).
Climatology of Lyapunov exponents: The influence of atmospheric rivers on large-scale mixing variability
Daniel Garaboa-Paz, Jorge Eiras-Barca, and Vicente Pérez-Muñuzuri Group of Nonlinear Physics, Faculty of Physics, University of Santiago de Compostela, 15782 Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Abstract. Large-scale tropospheric mixing and Lagrangian transport properties have been analyzed for a long-term period 1979–2014 in terms of the finite-time Lyapunov exponents (FTLE). Wind fields reanalysis from the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts were used to calculate Lagrangian trajectories of large ensembles of particles. The FTLE climatology shows large correlation values with the baroclinic instability growth rate. Larger values of the inter and intra-annual mixing variabilities highlight El Niño Southern Oscillation, the storm track or the Intertropical Convergence Zone among other large-scale structures. As a case study, the role that atmospheric rivers have on the large-scale atmospheric mixing and the precipitation rates observed in the Sahara-Morocco and British Isles regions have been analyzed. Atmospheric rivers contribution to tropospheric mixing is found to decrease from 15 % in Sahara-Morocco to less than 5 % for UK-Ireland regions, in agreement to their contribution to precipitation that is 40 % larger in the former than for the latter region.

Citation: Garaboa-Paz, D., Eiras-Barca, J., and Pérez-Muñuzuri, V.: Climatology of Lyapunov exponents: The influence of atmospheric rivers on large-scale mixing variability, Earth Syst. Dynam. Discuss., doi:10.5194/esd-2017-1, in review, 2017.
Daniel Garaboa-Paz et al.
Daniel Garaboa-Paz et al.
Daniel Garaboa-Paz et al.

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Short summary
For the first time a climatology of Lyapunov exponents (FTLE) for the period 1979–2014 has been established. This climatology is able to reproduce the main large-scale structures observed in the troposphere. The mean FTLE has been shown to correlate with the baroclinic Eady growth rate within time scales of a few days. As a case study the contribution of atmospheric rivers to this climatology has been studied and their contribution to rainfalls over the Sahara and UK regions studied.
For the first time a climatology of Lyapunov exponents (FTLE) for the period 1979–2014 has been...
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