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A Diagnostic Evaluation of Precipitation in CORDEX Models over Southern Africa
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2013 (English)In: Journal of Climate, ISSN 0894-8755, E-ISSN 1520-0442, Vol. 26, no 23, 9477-9506 p.Article, review/survey (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The authors evaluate the ability of 10 regional climate models (RCMs) to simulate precipitation over Southern Africa within the Coordinated Regional Climate Downscaling Experiment (CORDEX) framework. An ensemble of 10 regional climate simulations and the ensemble average is analyzed to evaluate the models' ability to reproduce seasonal and interannual regional climatic features over regions of the subcontinent. All the RCMs use a similar domain, have a spatial resolution of 50 km, and are driven by the Interim ECMWF Re-Analysis (ERA-Interim; 1989-2008). Results are compared against a number of observational datasets.In general, the spatial and temporal nature of rainfall over the region is captured by all RCMs, although individual models exhibit wet or dry biases over particular regions of the domain. Models generally produce lower seasonal variability of precipitation compared to observations and the magnitude of the variability varies in space and time. Model biases are related to model setup, simulated circulation anomalies, and moisture transport. The multimodel ensemble mean generally outperforms individual models, with bias magnitudes similar to differences across the observational datasets. In the northern parts of the domain, some of the RCMs and the ensemble average improve the precipitation climate compared to that of ERA-Interim. The models are generally able to capture the dry (wet) precipitation anomaly associated with El Nino (La Nina) events across the region. Based on this analysis, the authors suggest that the present set of RCMs can be used to provide useful information on climate projections of rainfall over Southern Africa.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 26, no 23, 9477-9506 p.
Keyword [en]
Climate prediction, Climate variability, Climatology, Regional models
National Category
Climate Research
Research subject
Climate
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:smhi:diva-340DOI: 10.1175/JCLI-D-12-00703.1ISI: 000327054100016OAI: oai:DiVA.org:smhi-340DiVA: diva2:805115
Available from: 2015-04-14 Created: 2015-03-31 Last updated: 2016-05-25Bibliographically approved

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Hewitson, BruceNikulin, Grigory
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CiteExportLink to record
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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
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  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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