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Publication Date
1 January 2020

Responses of the Hadley Circulation to Regional Sea Surface Temperature Changes



Idealized experiments performed with the Community Atmospheric Model 5.3 indicate that the width and strength of the Hadley circulation (HC) are sensitive to the location of sea surface temperature (SST) increases. The HC edge shifts poleward in response to SST increases over the subtropical regions near and on the equatorward flank of the HC edge, and shifts equatorward in response to warming over the tropical area except for the western Pacific Ocean and Indian Ocean. The HC is strengthened in response to SST increases over the intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ) and is weakened in response to SST increases over the subsidence branch of the HC in the subtropics. Tropical SST increases off the ITCZ tend to weaken the HC in the corresponding hemisphere and strengthen the HC in the opposite hemisphere. These results could be used to explain the simulated HC changes induced by recent SST variations, and it is estimated that more than half of the SST-induced HC widening in 1980–2014 is caused by changes in the spatial pattern of SST.
“Responses Of The Hadley Circulation To Regional Sea Surface Temperature Changes”. 2020. Journal Of Climate 33: 429-441. doi:10.1175/jcli-d-19-0315.1.
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