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A low-ozone episode during the European heat wave of August 2003
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Space Science.
2006 (English)In: Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society, ISSN 0035-9009, E-ISSN 1477-870X, Vol. 132, no 615, 667-680 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

An intense low-ozone episode (LOE) was observed over Scandinavia and the North Sea in the middle of August 2003. The LOE occurred under exceptional meteorological conditions, associated with a severe heatwave over Europe. The column ozone minimum for summer (June, July and August) 2003 was reached during the event.

Using meteorological analyses, satellite ozone observations from the Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer and the Michelson Interferometer for Passive Atmospheric Sounding aboard the Environment Satellite, we demonstrate that the LOE results from the conjunction of a deep tropospheric blocking over Europe, and a displaced Arctic pool of low-ozone air in the stratosphere, above the anticyclone. The anticyclonic anomaly is part of a Rossby wave train that is apparent throughout the troposphere, and whose influence is felt up to 50 hPa. In the mid-stratosphere (e.g. 30 hPa) long-period westward propagating planetary waves dominate, with a ridge extending over northern Europe in mid-August.

We band-pass filtered the geopotential field to isolate sub-monthly fluctuations, and calculated three-dimensional wave activity fluxes for quasi-stationary, quasi-geostrophic disturbances embedded in a zonally asymmetric basic state. Results clearly indicate that upward wave fluxes in the lower stratosphere originate from the Atlantic sector, upstream of the maturing blocking.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
John Wiley & Sons, 2006. Vol. 132, no 615, 667-680 p.
Keyword [en]
Atmospheric blocking, Ozone mini-holes, Stratosphere, Summer heatwave
National Category
Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-4696DOI: 10.1256/qj.05.30OAI: diva2:143907
Available from: 2005-09-22 Created: 2005-09-22 Last updated: 2012-06-29Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Impact of Rossby waves on ozone distribution and dynamics of the stratosphere and troposphere
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Impact of Rossby waves on ozone distribution and dynamics of the stratosphere and troposphere
2005 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Several physical mechanisms concerning the impact of Rossby waves on ozone distribution and circulation in the stratosphere and troposphere are studied in the thesis.

Summertime total ozone variability over Middle Asia and Northern Scandinavia shows similar wave-like behaviour with typical periods of 10-20 days and amplitudes of 20-50 Dobson units. These variations are caused by eastward travelling Rossby waves in the lower stratosphere. The same mechanism plays the primary role in the formation of an intense low ozone episode over Scandinavia in August 2003. A strong anticyclone was formed in the troposphere over Europe as a part of a Rossby wave train. The anticyclone coincides with a displaced Artic pool of low-ozone air in the stratosphere aloft of the anticyclone. A combination of the two above-mentioned processes results in the total ozone minimum over Northern Europe for summer 2003.

Interannual variability of the atmospheric circulation and total ozone during winter is strongly controlled by the diabatic (Brewer-Dobson) circulation which is driven by upward propagating waves from the troposphere. In the Northern Hemisphere midlatitudes, wintertime total ozone shows antiphase behaviour with the Arctic Oscillation (AO) index on interannual and decadal time-scales. Weaker (stronger) wave activity leads to less (more) northward ozone transport and to a stronger (weaker) AO.

Rossby wave activity occurs as episodic wave events and this wave forcing is not uniform during winter. The November-December stratospheric eddy heat flux is strongly anticorrelated with the January-February eddy heat flux in the midlatitude stratosphere and troposphere. Weaker upward wave fluxes in early winter lead to stronger upward wave fluxes from the troposphere as well as to a stronger polar night jet during midwinter and vice versa. Hence upward wave activity fluxes in early winter define, to a considerable extent, the subsequent evolution of the midwinter circulation in the stratosphere and troposphere.

32 p.
IRF Scientific Report, ISSN 0284-1703 ; 285
Meteorology, ozone, wave activity, trends, Brewer-Dobson circulation, Rossby waves, Arctic Oscillation, low ozone events, Meteorologi
National Category
Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences
Research subject
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-596 (URN)91-7305-946-3 (ISBN)
Public defence
2005-11-04, Aula, Rymdcampus, I10 road, Kiruna, 10:00
Available from: 2005-09-22 Created: 2005-09-22Bibliographically approved

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