Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 10, 2859-2887, 2010
© Author(s) 2010. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Review Status
This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP). Please refer to the corresponding final paper in ACP.
A new ENSO index derived from satellite measurements of column ozone
J. R. Ziemke1,2, S. Chandra1,2, L. D. Oman2, and P. K. Bhartia2
1Goddard Earth Sciences and Technology Center, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
2NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USA

Abstract. Column Ozone measured in tropical latitudes from Nimbus 7 TOMS, Earth Probe TOMS, NOAA SBUV, and Aura OMI satellite instruments are used to derive an El NiƱo-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) index. This index, which covers a time period from 1979 to the present, is defined as the Ozone ENSO Index (OEI) and is the first developed from atmospheric trace gas measurements. Using a data mining technique with existing ENSO indices of surface pressure and sea-surface temperature, the OEI is constructed by first averaging monthly mean column ozone over two broad regions in the western and eastern Pacific and taking their difference. This differencing yields a self-calibrating ENSO index which is independent of individual instrument calibration offsets and drifts in measurements over the long record. The combined Aura OMI and MLS ozone data confirm that zonal variability in total column ozone in the tropics caused by ENSO events lies almost entirely in the troposphere. As a result, the OEI can be derived directly from total column ozone instead of tropospheric column ozone. For clear-sky ozone measurements a +1 K change in Nino 3.4 index corresponds to +2.9 DU (Dobson Unit) change in the OEI, while a +1 hPa change in SOI coincides with a −1.7 DU change in the OEI. For ozone measurements under all cloud conditions these numbers are +2.4 DU and −1.4 DU, respectively. As an ENSO index based upon ozone, it is potentially useful in evaluating climate models predicting long term changes in ozone and other trace gases.

Citation: Ziemke, J. R., Chandra, S., Oman, L. D., and Bhartia, P. K.: A new ENSO index derived from satellite measurements of column ozone, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 10, 2859-2887, doi:10.5194/acpd-10-2859-2010, 2010.
Search ACPD
Discussion Paper
    Final Revised Paper