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Journal Article

Present and future atmospheric blocking and its impact on European mean and extreme climate


Sillmann,  J.
The Atmosphere in the Earth System, MPI for Meteorology, Max Planck Society;
IMPRS on Earth System Modelling, MPI for Meteorology, Max Planck Society;

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Sillmann, J., & Croci-Maspoli, M. (2009). Present and future atmospheric blocking and its impact on European mean and extreme climate. Geophysical Research Letters, 36: L10702. doi:10.1029/2009GL038259.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0011-F85E-5
Atmospheric blocking plays an important role in the mid-latitude climate variability and can be responsible for anomalous mean and/or extreme climate. In this study, a potential vorticity based blocking indicator is used to investigate the representation of Euro-Atlantic atmospheric blocking events in the ECHAM5/MPI-OM climate model. The impact of blocking events on present and future mean and extreme climate is studied by means of composite maps and correlation analyses. In comparison to ERA-40 re-analysis, the model represents the blocking frequency and seasonal distribution well. We show that European blocking events have a sustained influence particularly on anomalous cold winter temperatures in Europe. In a future climate, the blocking frequency is slightly diminished but the influence on the European winter climate remains robust. Due to a northeastward shift of the blocking pattern and an increase in maximum blocking duration, cold winter temperature extremes can still be expected in a future climate