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https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2020-206
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2020-206
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 25 Mar 2020

Submitted as: research article | 25 Mar 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Differing responses of the QBO to SO2 injections in two global models

Ulrike Niemeier1, Jadwiga H. Richter2, and Simone Tilmes2 Ulrike Niemeier et al.
  • 1Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Bundesstr. 53, 20146 Hamburg, Germany
  • 2National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO, USA

Abstract. Artificial injections of sulfur dioxide (SO2) into the stratosphere show in several model studies an impact on stratospheric dynamics. The quasi-biennial oscillation (QBO) has been shown to slow down or even vanish, under higher SO2 injections in the equatorial region. But the impact is only qualitatively, but not quantitatively consistent across the different studies using different numerical models. The aim of this study is to understand the reasons behind the differences in the QBO response to SO2 injections between two general circulation models, the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM-110L) and MAECHAM5-HAM. We show that the response of the QBO to injections with the same SO2 injection rate is very different in the two models, but similar when a similar stratospheric heating rate is induced by SO2 injections of different amounts. The reason for the different response of the QBO corresponding to the same injection rate is very different vertical advection in the two models, even in the control simulation. The stronger vertical advection in WACCM results in a higher aerosol burden and stronger heating of the aerosols, and, consequently in a vanishing QBO at lower injection rate than in simulations with MAECHAM5-HAM.

Ulrike Niemeier et al.

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Ulrike Niemeier et al.

Ulrike Niemeier et al.

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Short summary
Artificial injections of SO2 into the tropical stratosphere show an impact on the quasi-biennial oscillation (QBO). Different numerical models show only qualitatively, but not quantitatively consistent impacts. We show for two models that the response of the QBO is similar when a similar stratospheric heating rate is induced by SO2 injections of different amounts. The reason is very different vertical advection in the two models resulting in different aerosol burden and heating of the aerolsols.
Artificial injections of SO2 into the tropical stratosphere show an impact on the quasi-biennial...
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