Transport pathways across the West African Monsoon as revealed by Lagrangian Coherent Structures


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Niang, Coumba and Mancho, Ana María and García Garrido, Víctor José and Mohino Harris, Elsa and Rodríguez Fonseca, María Belén and Curbelo, Jezabel (2020) Transport pathways across the West African Monsoon as revealed by Lagrangian Coherent Structures. Scientific reports, 10 (1). ISSN 2045-2322

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The West African Monsoon (WAM) system is the main source of rainfall in the agriculturally based region of the Sahel. Understanding transport across the WAM is of crucial importance due to the strong impact of humidity and dust pathways on local cloud formation. However, the description of this transport is challenging due to its 3D complex nature. Lagrangian Coherent Structures (LCS) simplify transport description across the WAM by providing a geometrical partition of the troposphere into domains. Air parcels within each domain have similar dynamical characteristics. LCS make it possible to achieve an integrated vision of transport pathways across this system. Using this approach we unveil new connections in the WAM system. In particular, we identify transport pathways between the Tropical Easterly Jet (TEJ) and the African Easterly Jet (AEJ). Furthermore, the clockwise circulation associated with the divergent upper part of the Sahara heat low is clearly delimitated. Additionally, we show the presence of mixing regions in the AEJ and the lower part of the TEJ that are linked to pathways to sources of dust and humidity.

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© The Author(s) 2020. A. M. Mancho, C. Niang, V. J. García Garrido and J. Curbelo acknowledge the support of ONR Grant N00014- 17-1-3003. C. Niang acknowledges Fundación Mujeres por África, ICMAT Severo Ochoa Project SEV-2011-0087 and Fundación Harambee (Becas Guadalupe) for financial support. A. M. Mancho and C. Niang are supported by CSIC Grant COOPB20265. B. Rodríguez-Fonseca and E. Mohino acknowledge the support of Project CGL2017- 86415-R. J. Curbelo acknowledges the support of the RyC project RYC2018-025169-I and the U.S. NSF Grant AGS-1832842. Authors thankfully acknowledge the support of the computer resources provided by ICMAT.

Uncontrolled Keywords:Phase-spaces structures; Southerns stratosphere; Seasonal evolution; Moisture; Climatology; Descriptors; Dust; Precipitation; Circulation; Reanalysis
Subjects:Sciences > Physics > Atmospheric physics
ID Code:62137
Deposited On:23 Sep 2020 09:42
Last Modified:23 Sep 2020 10:40

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