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Chin. Phys. B, 2015, Vol. 24(2): 029201    DOI: 10.1088/1674-1056/24/2/029201

Changing characteristics and spatial differentiation of spring precipitation in Southwest China during 1961-2012

Liu Hong-Lana, Zhang Qiangb, Zhang Jun-Guoc, Hu Wen-Chaod, Guo Jun-Qine, Wang Shengf
a Zhangye Meteorological Bureau, Zhangye 734000, China;
b Institute of Arid Meteorology, China Meteorological Administration, Key Laboratory of Arid Climatic Change and Disaster Reduction of Gansu Province, Key Laboratory of Arid Climate Change and Disaster Reduction of China Meteorological Administration, Lanzhou 730020, China;
c Zhangye Middle School, Zhangye 734000, China;
d Meteorological Service Center of Gansu Province, Lanzhou 730020, China;
e Northwest Regional Climate Center, Lanzhou 730020, China;
f Jinta County Meteorological Bureau, Jinta 735300, China
Abstract  In this study, we analyze spring precipitation from 92 meteorological stations spanning between 1961 and 2012 to understand temporal-spatial variability and change of spring precipitation over Southwest China. Various analysis methods are used for different purposes, including empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analysis and rotated EOF (REOF) for analyzing spatial structure change of precipitation anomaly, and the Mann-Kendall testing method to determine whether there were abrupt changes during the analyzed time span. We find that the first spatial mode of the precipitation has a domain uniform structure; the second is dominated by a spatial dipole; and the third contains five variability centers. The 2000s is the decade with the largest amount of precipitation while the 1990s is the decade with the smallest amount of precipitation. The year-to-year difference of that region is large: the amount of the largest precipitation year doubles that of the smallest precipitation year. We also find that spring precipitation in Southwest China experienced a few abrupt changes: a sudden increase at 1966, a sudden decrease at 1979, and a sudden increase at 1995. We speculate that the spring precipitation will increase gradually in the next two decades.
Keywords:  spring precipitation      temporal-spatial structure      500-hPa level      Southwest region     
Received:  17 June 2014      Published:  05 February 2015
PACS:  92.05.Df (Climate and inter-annual variability)  
  92.40.Cy (Modeling; general theory)  
  92.40.Ea (Precipitation)  
Fund: Project supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (Grant No. 2013CB430200 (2013CB430206)) and the Sixth Program Ten Talented People of the Meteorological Bureau of Gansu Province, China.
Corresponding Authors:  Liu Hong-Lan     E-mail:

Cite this article: 

Liu Hong-Lan, Zhang Qiang, Zhang Jun-Guo, Hu Wen-Chao, Guo Jun-Qin, Wang Sheng Changing characteristics and spatial differentiation of spring precipitation in Southwest China during 1961-2012 2015 Chin. Phys. B 24 029201

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