The Asian Summer Monsoon: An Intercomparison of CMIP5 vs. CMIP3 Simulations of the Late 20th Century

Wednesday, May 14, 2014 - 07:00
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The boreal summer Asian monsoon has been evaluated in 25 Coupled Model Intercomparison Project-5 (CMIP5) and 22 CMIP3 GCM simulations of the late 20th Century. Diagnostics and skill metrics have been calculated to assess the time-mean, climatological annual cycle, interannual variability, and intraseasonal variability. Progress has been made in modeling these aspects of the monsoon, though there is no single model that best represents all of these aspects of the monsoon. The CMIP5 multi-model mean (MMM) is more skillful than the CMIP3 MMM for all diagnostics in terms of the skill of simulating pattern correlations with respect to observations. Additionally, for rainfall/convection the MMM outperforms the individual models for the time mean, the interannual variability of the East Asian monsoon, and intraseasonal variability. For the climatological annual cycle, the pattern correlation of the time (pentad) of monsoon peak and withdrawal is better simulated than that of monsoon onset. The onset of the monsoon over India is typically too late in the models. The extension of the monsoon over eastern China, Korea, and Japan is underestimated, while it is overestimated over the subtropical western/central Pacific Ocean. The anti-correlation between anomalies of all-India rainfall and NINO3.4 sea surface temperature is overly strong in CMIP3 and typically too weak in CMIP5. For both the ENSO-monsoon teleconnection and the East Asian zonal wind-rainfall teleconnection, the MMM interannual rainfall anomalies are weak compared to observations. Though simulation of intraseasonal variability remains problematic, several models show improved skill at representing the northward propagation of convection and the development of the tilted band of convection that extends from India to the equatorial west Pacific. The MMM also well represents the space-time evolution of intraseasonal outgoing longwave radiation anomalies. Sperber, K. R., H. Annamalai, I.-S. Kang, A. Kitoh, A. Moise, A. Turner, B. Wang, and T. Zhou, 2013: The Asian summer monsoon: An intercomparison of CMIP5 vs. CMIP3 simulations of the late 20th century. Clim. Dynam., 41, 2771-2744, (DOI: 10.1007/s00382-012-1607-6)