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Response of the Atmospheric and Oceanic Circulation to a Warming Climate

Final Report Summary - ATMOSOCEAN (Response of the Atmospheric and Oceanic Circulation to a Warming Climate)

The overall objective of the project was to better understand yhe general circulation of the atmosphere itself, the robustness and the underlying dynamics of the response of the general circulation of the atmosphere and ocean to a warming climate and the interaction with natural variability, and to understand the relationship of the circulation of Earth to that of other atmospheres, such as Jupiter, Mars, Venus and exoplanets. As well as studying the present circulation of the atmosphere, the project involves studying the atmospheres of Earth-like planets in a different parameter regime, in order to better understand the possible range of circulations of our planet as climate changes.

Since the project began, the following work has been performed:
We have developed a hierarchy of models of the atmosphere of Earth and other terrestrial planets.
The models span a range from being highly idealised models with a simple thermal forcing, through models with a simple radiation scheme, to models with a realistic radiation scheme and configurable continents and topography. The models have also been extended so that the the mass, incoming radiation, obliquity, rotation rate and various other parameters can be easily configured.

We used the models tin a very wide variety of investigations, as follows:

1. The circulation of Earth's atmosphere as the planet warms
2. The dynamics an circulation of monsoons.
3, The dynamics of the Hdaley Cell in the low rotation limit.
4. The relation of Earth's circulation to that of a number of other planets, including Mars, Venus and Jupiter.
5. The influence of obliquity and eccentricity on the seasonal progression.

All of these activities have, or will shortly, lead to papers in the peer-reviewed literature. These results are very relevant for understanding the robustness of results regarding the response of Earth's climate to global warming.

In addition, the PI has developed a large, active research group comprising 4 postdoctoral scientist and 4 PhD students. The PI has also given seminars and lectures at many institutions across Europe.