Previous studies have talked about the existence of a relation between the Atlantic meridional mode (AMM) and Atlantic zonal mode (AZM) via the meridional displacement of the intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ) in the Atlantic during boreal spring and the resulting cross-equatorial zonal winds. However, why the strong relation between the ITCZ (or AMM) and zonal winds does not translate into a strong relation between the ITCZ and AZM has not been explained. This question is addressed here, and it is found that there is a skewness in the relation between ITCZ and AZM: while a northward migration of ITCZ during spring in general leads to a cold AZM event in the ensuing summer, the southward migration of the ITCZ is less likely to lead to a warm event. This is contrary to what the previous studies imply. The skewness is attributed to the Atlantic seasonal cycle and to the strong seasonality of the AZM. All those cold AZM events preceded by a northward ITCZ movement during spring are found to strictly adhere to typical timings and evolution of the different Bjerknes feedback components involved. It is also observed that the causative mechanisms of warm events are more diverse than those of the cold events. These results can be expected to enhance our understanding of the AZM as well as that of chronic model biases and contribute to the predictability of the Indian summer monsoon through the links between the two as shown in our earlier studies.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atmospheric Science