Sudden Stratospheric Warming

The relationship between Tornadoes, Volcanic activity and Blocking Highs.
I know I should do all this with pictures but I am on a public machine and totally disorganised.
So here is a thousand words instead: …

Nobody knows what causes Blocking Highs, everyone knows that volcanoes are a total mystery and if we are so clever, why is the richest nation on the planet despite all the interest it has in them, ALWAYS caught out by tornadoes?

The answer is that nobody had ever thought to put them all together before. When I first started looking at the cause of earthquakes, I was surprised to find that it was a totally unrelated branch of science to volcano research.

When Bernard Chouet discovered wave harmonies in volcanic eruptions his work was dismissed. Then when all the experts who had different views were all killed in a volcanic eruption, some of the clever buggers that were left started to rationalise things out.

And that's about as far as the work has gone to date.

Now throw out the afterbirth with the bath water and dig in the rubbish to find the baby:

Something strange occurs in the upper atmosphere (often in the dead of winter) to bring about a tremendous heating phenomenon. It has only been discovered fairly recently as satellite measuring equipment has been invented. (it takes 40 million dollars to launch a rocket so research is slow and expensive even if the technology IS fairly well known.)

Anyway a source of lists for SSWs would be the way to go on this.
We know when volcanoes erupt. You can always tell by the colour of the smoke and by the amount of ash falling on everyone locally.

But apart from that, it isn't widely known that vulcanology hasn't progressed far from the days when research into them involved poking vents with a big stick. Few volcanoes are monitored and almost none of the undersea vents are.
So there is no telling when a volcano first begins to heat the region.
What might the background heat BE for a volcano anyway?

As for tornadoes…
Well we are still in the poke it with a stick format with them too.


We have computer weather models and the BoM runs in particular are VERY GOOD at pulling those three rabbits out of the hat in succession. Very good indeed.

This is from (guess what year) a newsgroup post by an expert (despite the fact he might be a scientist I have a great deal of respect for him) meteorologist: Martin Rowley.

"The impact that events occurring in the stratosphere have on the troposphere is discussed…
…whether there was recent research on all this. I've used the search facility here: using the phrase: "Sudden Stratospheric Warming" and found 103 titles. (Latest first/cut-off 1982)

Dynamical response of low-latitude middle atmosphere to major sudden stratospheric warming events Sathishkumar, S.
Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics, VOL. 71 NO. 8/9, 2009

Blocking precursors to stratospheric sudden warming events Martius, O.
Geophysical Research Letters, VOL. 36 NO. 14, 2009

Planetary wave breaking and tropospheric forcing as seen in the stratospheric sudden warming of 2006 Coy, L.
Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, VOL. 66 NO. 2, 2009

Is there a statistical connection between stratospheric sudden warming and tropospheric blocking events? Taguchi, M.
Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, VOL. 65 NO. 4, 2008

Effect of stratospheric sudden warming and vortex intensification on the tropospheric climate Kuroda, Y.
Journal of Geophysical Research (Atmospheres), VOL. 113 NO. D15, 2008

The possible influence of stratospheric sudden warming on East Asian Weather Deng, S.
Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, VOL. 25 NO. 5, 2008

What kind of stratospheric sudden warming propagates to the troposphere? Nakagawa, K.I.
Geophysical Research Letters, VOL. 33 NO. 4, 2006

Influence of stratospheric sudden warming on the equatorial troposphere Kodera, K.
Geophysical Research Letters, VOL. 33 NO. 6, 2006

The impact of the stratosphere on the troposphere during the southern hemisphere stratospheric sudden warming, September 2002 Charlton, A.J.
Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society, VOL. 131 NO.
609, 2005

A mechanistic model study of slowly propagating coupled stratosphere-troposphere variability Kodera, K.
Journal of Geophysical Research (Atmospheres), VOL. 105 NO. D10, 2000

Tropospheric circulation changes associated with stratospheric sudden warmings: a case study Kodera, K.
Journal of Geophysical Research (Atmospheres), VOL. 100 NO. D 6, 1995

The quasi-biennial oscillation and major stratospheric warmings: a three-dimensional model study Dameris, M.
Annales Geophysicae, VOL. 8 NO. 2, 1990

Planetary waves modulated by the quasi-biennial oscillation (QBO) Maillard, A.
Annales Geophysicae, VOL. 8 NO. 7/8, 1990

Sudden stratospheric warming and anomalous U.S. weather Douglas, D.A.
Monthly Weather Review, VOL. 116 NO. 1, 1988

A numerical test of connections between the stratospheric sudden warming and the quasi-biennial oscillation Bridger, A.F.C.
Journal of Geophysical Research (Atmospheres), VOL. 89 NO. D3, 1984

And of course, these couplings have been studied by researchers in Russia, Japan, China and France, to name but four, and to do an exhaustive search would require looking for works published in those languages – it has been an 'active' area of research over the last 10 years or so.

A word of caution: don't rely on a 'general' internet search for this type of subject: you need to interrogate specialised catalogues, such as this one, or the AMS etc.


9 thoughts on “Sudden Stratospheric Warming

  1. One of the correspondants in the thread is a pill so I didn't enjoy reading it, however: role of the stratosphere in the European climate response to El Niño: S. Ineson & A. A. Scaife

    El Niño/Southern Oscillation is the largest natural interannual climate signal in the tropics; oscillations between warm El Niño and cold La Niña phases occur every few years. The effects are felt not only in the centre of action, the tropical Pacific region, but around the globe.Observational studies show a clear response in European climate to ENSO in late winter. However, the underlying mechanisms of the link are not yet understood. Here we use a general circulation model of the atmosphere, that has been extended into the upper atmospheric layers, to provide end-to-end evidence for a global teleconnection pathway from the Pacific region to Europe via the stratosphere.We present evidence for an active stratospheric role in the transition to cold conditions in northern Europe and mild conditions in southern Europe in late winter during El Niño years.In our experiments, this mechanism is restricted to years when stratospheric sudden warmings occur. The response in European surface climate to the El Niño signal is large enough to be useful for seasonal forecasting.

    Nature Geoscience 2, 32 – 36 (2009) Published online: 7 December 2008 | doi:10.1038/ngeo381 It sounds like what they call an Abstract (the introduction) to a "research paper" which means it is pretty near useless as far as explaining things goes.And to couple that with my point of view it is on entirely the wrong track.To look for a relationship with El Ninos and the like is so far from anything useful it beggars belief that these people are getting finance to do research.Bu there is one point the bod makes:"this mechanism is restricted to years when stratospheric sudden warmings occur".All we have to do now is pay 30 or 40 quid to hope we get a list of "years when stratospheric sudden warmings occur".

  2. As you can see, apart from the very broad generality that certain oceans have their storms in one half of the year and the other oceans have them in the other half; there appears no cohesive cause for these phenomena.If the cause of these things is an acoustic wave, then what causes that wave to stop and start the way it does?I can not tell you what is causing it to start. But I can tell you that it never stops.Whatever your beliefs, there has to be a very real mechanism for these things and simple sunlight working on the so called Warm Pool (or Warm Pools) just does not cut it.Why, for example, would two or three storms, in different parts of the world, start up on almost the same dates?Why are other dates almost devoid of storms in some years when they appear at those times in other years?And what else could cause the appearance of simultaneous cyclones on the North Atlantic chart with such regularity that you can use the charts to forecast the coming cyclone as well as the severity and duration of the tropical storm?The answer to all the above questions is that the wave of sound (or whatever the first cause is behind these events) sweeps the planet with a multi-discipline of geo-phenomena simultaneously.It must do this to feed the little fishes and the the fields of the earth; farm and wilderness, lake,river and sea, each in their season. When a dust storm occurs, it supplies the oceans beneath with much needed nutriment. When it falls on ice, on mountain glaciers or artic snow packs, it feeds the algae. This in turn feeds the krill oceans and the midges in the valleys.As this runs down the rivers and into the estuaries, it feeds the plant and animal life in there.The same is true of volcanic eruptions:Superheated water at depth can and does dissolve rock. Immediatley the pressure changes the temperature changes too. Different crystals come out of solution in different way. Around volcanoes most of the residue rock is a form of glass.It has different names according to the state of the rock but it is mostly silicon oxide. The other minerals have left the building. The sulphur and metal rich minerals are fired into the the stratosphere or merely join the storm clouds above the vent to fetilise the vinyards and sugar cane and to feed fish stocks locally.Almost all the output from Hawaii, the world's largest chimney in the world's favourite paradise, goes to feed the Arctic, one way or another. Or at least; the few times I have followed large VEI eruptions there, the weather seems to take it directly through the continental gap between Russia and America.

  3. 01 January02 January03 January04 January05 January06 January07 January08 January09 January10 January11 JanuaryS. Pacific, 11-15 JAN , Tropical Storm VANIA , 12 JanuaryS Indian, Tropical Storm VINCE, 12-16 JAN13 January14 JanuaryS. Pacific, 14-17 JAN , Cyclone-2 ZELIA , Cat 215 January16 January17 January18 January19 January20 January21 January22 JanuaryS. Pacific, 22-28 JAN , Cyclone-4 WILMA , Cat 423 JanuaryS. Pacific, 23-30 JAN , Tropical Storm ANTHONY24 January25 JanuaryS Indian, Cyclone-4 BIANCA, 25-29 JAN, Cat 426 January27 January28 January29 January30 JanuaryS. Pacific, 30 JAN-03 FEB , Cyclone-4 YASI , Cat 431 January01 February02 February03 February04 February05 February06 FebruaryS. Pacific, 06-07 FEB , Tropical Storm ZAKA 07 February08 February09 FebruaryS Indian, Cyclone-3 BINGIZA, 09-17 FEB, Cat 310 February11 FebruaryS Indian, Tropical Storm FOURTEEN, 11-12 FEB12 February13 February14 February15 FebruaryS Indian, Cyclone-1 CARLOS, 15-26 FEB, Cat 116 FebruaryS Indian, Cyclone-2 DIANNE, 16-22 FEB, Cat 217 February18 FebruaryS. Pacific, 18-23 FEB , Cyclone-4 ATU , Cat 419 February20 February21 February22 February23 February24 February25 February26 February27 February28 February01 March02 March03 March04 March05 March06 March07 March08 March09 March10 March11 March12 March13 March14 March15 March16 March17 MarchS Indian, Tropical Storm CHERONO, 17-19 MAR18 March19 March20 March21 March22 March23 MarchS. Pacific, 23-28 MAR , Cyclone-1 BUNE , Cat 124 March25 March26 March27 March28 March29 March30 March31 March

  4. 01 July02 July03 July04 July05 July06 July07 JulyEastern Pacific, 07-10 JUL, Hurricane-1 CALVIN, Cat 108 July09 July10 July11 JulyW. Pacific, 11-22 JUL , Typhoon-4 MA_ON , Cat 412 July13 July14 July15 JulyW. Pacific, 15-16 JUL , Tropical Depression TOKAGE16 July17 JulyNorth Atlantic, 17-22 JUL Tropical Storm BRET18 JulyEastern Pacific, 18-24 JUL, Hurricane-4 DORA, Cat 419 July20 JulyNorth Atlantic, 20-22 JUL Tropical Storm CINDY, 21 July22 July23 July24 JulyW. Pacific, 24-30 JUL , Typhoon-1 NOCK_TEN , Cat 125 JulyW. Pacific, 25 JUL-08 AUG , Super Typhoon-5 MUIFA , Cat 526 July27 JulyNorth Atlantic, 27-30 JUL Tropical Storm DON28 July29 July30 July31 JulyEastern Pacific, 31 JUL-06 AUG, Hurricane-4 EUGENE, Cat 401 AugustNorth Atlantic, 01-07 AUG Tropical Storm EMILY02 August03 AugustW. Pacific, 03-08 AUG , Typhoon-1 MERBOK , 1 Cat04 August05 August06 August07 August08 August09 August10 AugustW. Pacific, 10-12 AUG , Tropical Depression THIRTEEN11 August12 AugustNorth Atlantic, 12-13 AUG Tropical Storm FRANKLIN13 August14 AugustNorth Atlantic, 14-16 AUG Tropical Storm GERT15 AugustEastern Pacific, 15-20 AUG, Tropical Storm FERNANDA16 AugustEastern Pacific, 16-21 AUG, Hurricane-1 GREG, Cat 117 August18 August19 AugustNorth Atlantic, 19-22 AUG Tropical Storm HARVEY20 AugustNorth Atlantic, 20-29 AUG Hurricane-3 IRENE, Cat 321 August22 AugustW. Pacific, 22-31 AUG , Super Typhoon-4 NANMADOL , Cat 423 August24 August25 AugustNorth Atlantic, 25-26 AUG Tropical Depression TENW. Pacific, 25 AUG-04 SEP , Tropical Storm TALAS26 August27 August28 AugustNorth Atlantic, 28-29 AUG Tropical Storm JOSE29 AugustNorth Atlantic, 29 AUG-10 SEP Hurricane-4 KATIA, Cat 430 August31 AugustEastern Pacific, 31-31 AUG, Tropical Depression EIGHT_01 September02 SeptemberNorth Atlantic, 02-05 SEP Tropical Storm LEE03 SeptemberW. Pacific, 03-06 SEP , Tropical Storm NORU04 September05 September06 SeptemberNorth Atlantic, 06-16 SEP Hurricane-1 MARIA, Cat107 SeptemberNorth Atlantic, 07-11 SEP, Tropical Storm NATEW. Pacific, 07-10 SEP , Tropical Storm KULAP08 September09 September10 September11 SeptemberW. Pacific, 11-21 SEP , Typhoon-4 ROKE , Cat 412 September13 September14 SeptemberW. Pacific, 14-20 SEP , Typhoon-2 SONCA , Cat 215 September16 September17 September18 September19 September20 September21 SeptemberNorth Atlantic, 21 SEP-03 OCT Hurricane-4 OPHELIA, Cat4Eastern Pacific, 21-30 SEP, Hurricane-4 HILARY, Cat 422 September23 SeptemberW. Pacific, 23-30 SEP , Typhoon-3 NESAT , Cat 324 SeptemberNorth Atlantic, 24 SEP-08 OCT Hurricane-1 PHILIPPE, Cat1W. Pacific, 24-26 SEP , Tropical Storm HAITANG25 September26 September27 SeptemberW. Pacific, 27 SEP-05 OCT , Super Typhoon-4 NALGAE , Cat 428 September29 September30 September

  5. Originally posted by Weatherlawyer:

    It must do this to feed the little fishes and the the fields of the earth; farm and wilderness, lake,river and sea, each in their season. When a dust storm occurs, it supplies the oceans beneath with much needed nutriment. When it falls on ice, on mountain glaciers or artic snow packs, it feeds the algae. This in turn feeds the krill oceans and the midges in the valleys.

    Originally posted by Earth Observatory:

    The Kamchatka Peninsula of far eastern Russian was surrounded by life in late May 2013—at least the oceanic sort. Massive blooms of microscopic, plant-like organisms called phytoplankton spread green over the nearby waters. Phytoplankton typically support an abundance of other fish and marine life. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured the natural-color imagery to make this composite view on May 23, 2013. Looking toward the North Pole from the southern end of the peninsula, blooms of chlorophyll-rich cells appear off both the west coast—in the Sea of Okhotsk—and to the east in the North Pacific Ocean.Stretching nearly 1,250-kilometers (780 mile) from north to south, the peninsula is dotted with volcanoes, some of which are faintly visible in the image above. (Click on the large version for a better view.) Kamchatka lies along the Pacific “Ring of Fire,” an area of extremely active volcanism and plate tectonic earthquakes.]

  6. It isn't much to go on apart from intuition and circumstantial evidence but I have the opinion that the cause of northern hemisphere tropical storms has a great deal to do with the extent of the Antarctic ice cover:The size of the pack ice is greatest in September, when the southern hemisphere's warmer weather kicks in and starts to break it up.The Meterological equator is still in the southern hemisphere until about November. It is after November that the sea ice surrounding the Antarctic is a less effective acoustic mechanism for the process.How does it work?I don't know.But when a cyclone moves into the space between Greenland and Iceland, it appears to build up a larger and larger ring of isobars until it can spread, amoeba like, to Norway.Maybe it is holding this pattern until the sound increases enough for the energy values to allow it to move or on other occasion drop so that the strom loses its identity or/and merges with a different system.Search for yourselves and see if the records show that whenever a severe tropical storm takes place, a cyclone appears in the North Atlantic. The following dates are from the Unisys archives:

  7. 01 October02 October03 October04 October05 October06 OctoberEastern Pacific, 06-13 OCT, Hurricane-3 JOVA, Cat 3Eastern Pacific, 06-17 OCT, Hurricane-1 IRWIN, Cat 107 October08 October09 October10 OctoberW. Pacific, 10-14 OCT , Tropical Storm BANYAN11 October12 OctoberEastern Pacific, 12-12 OCT, Tropical Depression TWELVE13 October14 October15 October16 October17 October18 October19 OctoberN Indian TS TWO 19-19 OCT20 October21 October22 October23 OctoberNorth Atlantic, 23-28 OCT Hurricane-2 RINA, Cat 224 October25 October26 October27 October28 October29 October30 October31 October01 November02 November03 November04 November05 November06 November07 November08 NovemberNorth Atlantic, 08-11 NOV Tropical Storm SEAN09 November10 November11 November12 November13 November14 November15 November16 November17 November18 November19 November20 November21 November22 November23 November24 November25 November26 November27 November28 November29 November30 November01 December02 December03 December04 December05 December06 December07 December08 December09 December10 December11 December12 December13 December14 December15 December16 December17 December18 December19 December20 December21 December22 December23 December24 December25 December26 December27 December28 December29 December30 December31 December

  8. The acoustic signal that causes storms also causes calms; Blocking Highs. According to the Australian BoM charts of the Southern Hemisphere, there is a regular pattern to it all. In one situation a lobe appears in the isobars surrounding Antarctica and extends out into what used to be called the Doldrums.This is a signal for volcanic activity, tornadoes in the USA (and as far as I know; elsewhere) and the onset of a Blocking High in the various oceans that have such things. How many and where, remains to be studied.With the building up of blocking highs the isobars around the Antarctic encompass most of the southern hemisphere, stymied only by the other three continets in that hemisphere. When that happens, tropical storms can reach Categories 3 or 4 and occasionally 5.When the outer (1016 millibar) isobars are smooth lines occupying most of one ocean only, the likelihood of a tropical storm reaching hurricane force is slight. But tropical depressions will occur in those situations, none the less.

  9. 01 April02 AprilS Indian, Tropical Storm TWENTY, 02-04 APRW. Pacific, 02-03 APR , Tropical Depression ONE03 April04 April05 AprilW. Pacific, 05-06 APR , Tropical Depression TWO06 April07 April08 April09 April10 April11 April12 April13 April14 April15 AprilS Indian, Tropical Storm ERROL, 15-18 APR16 April17 April18 April19 April20 April21 April22 April23 April24 April25 April26 April27 April28 April29 April30 April01 May02 May03 May04 May05 May06 MayW. Pacific, 06-11 MAY , Tropical Storm AERE07 May08 May09 May10 May11 May12 May13 May14 May15 May16 May17 May18 May19 May20 MayW. Pacific, 20-29 MAY , Super Typhoon-5 SONGDA , Cat 521 May22 May23 May24 May25 May26 May27 May28 May29 May30 May31 May01 June02 June03 June04 June05 June06 June07 JuneEastern Pacific, 07-12 JUN, Hurricane-4 ADRIAN, Cat 408 June09 JuneW. Pacific, 09-11 JUN , Tropical Storm SARIKA10 June11 JuneN Indian TS ONE 11-12 JUN12 June13 June14 June15 June16 JuneW. Pacific, 16-24 JUN , Tropical Storm HAIMA17 June18 June19 JuneEastern Pacific, 19-22 JUN, Hurricane-1 BEATRIZ, Cat 120 June21 JuneW. Pacific, 21-27 JUN , Tropical Storm MEARI22 June23 June24 June25 June26 June27 June28 June29 JuneNorth Atlantic, 29 JUN-01 JUL, Tropical Storm ARLENE 30 June

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