Sciences in Cold and Arid Regions ›› 2018, Vol. 10 ›› Issue (5): 369-378.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1226.2018.00369

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Comparison of temperature extremes between Zhongshan Station and Great Wall Station in Antarctica

AiHong Xie1,*(),ShiMeng Wang1,*(),YiCheng Wang1,2,ChuanJin Li1   

  1. 1 State Key Laboratory of Cryospheric Science, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou, Gansu 730000, China
    2 Gansu Meteorological Administration, Lanzhou, Gansu 730020, China
  • Received:2018-05-03 Accepted:2018-07-03 Online:2018-10-01 Published:2018-11-21
  • Contact: AiHong Xie,ShiMeng Wang E-mail:xieaih@lzb.ac.cn;wangshimeng@lzb.ac.cn

Abstract:

Although temperature extremes have led to more and more disasters, there are as yet few studies on the extremes and many disagreements on temperature changes in Antarctica. Based on daily minimum, maximum, and mean air temperatures (Tmin, Tmax, Tmean) at Great Wall Station (GW) and Zhongshan Station (ZS), we compared the temperature extremes and revealed a strong warming trend in Tmin, a slight warming trend in Tmean, cooling in Tmax, a decreasing trend in the daily temperature range, and the typical characteristic of coreless winter temperature. There are different seasonal variabilities, with the least in summer. The continentality index and seasonality show that the marine air mass has more effect on GW than ZS. Following the terminology of the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC AR5), we defined nine indices of temperature extremes, based on the Antarctic geographical environment. Extreme-warm days have decreased, while extreme-warm nights have shown a nonsignificant trend. The number of melting days has increased at GW, while little change at ZS. More importantly, we have found inverse variations in temperature patterns between the two stations, which need further investigation into the dynamics of climate change in Antarctica.

Key words: temperature extremes, Great Wall Station, Zhongshan Station, West Antarctica, East Antarctica, inverse variations, climate events

Figure 1

Map of Antarctica and annual spatial footprint of GW (left) and ZS (right) stations' temperature (The color shadings show the correlation between the annual mean temperatures at GW or ZS and at every other grid point in Antarctica. The correlations are calculated using ERA-Interim 2-metre temperature from 1989 to 2015. Stars denote the location of GW and ZS)"

Table 1

Annual, seasonal, and monthly Tmean, Tmin, and Tmax (°C) and CI (%) for Great Wall and Zhongshan stations "

Temperature Station CI Annual SON DJF MAM JJA Jan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
Tmean Great Wall 9.05 ?2.2 ?2.7 1.3 ?1.5 ?5.9 1.8 1.8 0.6 ?1.7 ?3.1 ?5.3 ?6.2 ?5.6 ?4.4 ?2.5 ?1.0 0.5
ZhongShan 17.7 ?10.0 ?10.8 ?1.0 ?12.2 ?15.6 0.3 ?2.8 ?8.1 ?13.0 ?15.3 ?14.3 ?16.2 ?16.3 ?15.2 ?12.0 ?5.1 ?0.4
Tmin Great Wall 10.4 ?4.3 ?7.3 ?1.2 ?5.7 ?10.4 0.3 0.2 ?1.1 ?3.4 ?5.1 ?7.8 ?8.9 ?8.2 ?7.0 ?4.5 ?2.7 ?1.0
ZhongShan 18.5 ?12.6 ?18.1 ?4.9 ?18.8 ?21.0 ?1.9 ?4.7 ?10.2 ?15.5 ?18.3 ?17.2 ?19.2 ?19.3 ?18.0 ?14.7 ?7.8 ?2.8
Tmax Great Wall 8.27 ?0.1 0.8 3.9 2.3 ?2.0 3.7 3.5 2.3 0.1 ?1.2 ?3.0 ?3.6 ?3.2 ?2.1 ?0.6 0.8 2.4
ZhongShan 17.5 ?7.2 ?2.0 3.2 ?5.8 ?10.5 3.0 ?0.5 ?5.8 ?10.5 ?12.5 ?11.6 ?13.3 ?13.4 ?12.4 ?8.9 ?2.0 2.5

Table 2

Definitions of nine indices of temperature extremes"

Index Descriptive name Definition Units
TXx Warmest day Annual highest Tmax °C
TNx Warmest night Annual highest Tmin °C
TXn Coldest day Annual lowest Tmax °C
TNn Coldest night Annual lowest Tmin °C
TX10 Cold-day frequency Percentage of days when Tmax < 10th percentile of 1985/1989–2015 %
TN10 Cold-night frequency Percentage of days when Tmin < 10th percentile of 1985/1989–2015 %
TN90 Warm-night frequency Percentage of days when Tmin > 90th percentile of 1985/1989–2015 %
TX90 Warm-day frequency Percentage of days when Tmax > 90th percentile of 1985/1989–2015 %
MD Melting days Annual count when Tmin ≥0 °C d

Figure 2

Time series of annual mean (solid line), maximum (broken line with solid circle), and minimum (dotted line with triangle) temperature (°C) and the corresponding linear trends at GW (black) and ZS (red) stations (from daily values) for annual and austral seasons: Spring (SON), Summer (DJF), Autumn (MAM), and Winter (JJA) (°C)"

Figure 3

The daily temperature range (DTR) (°C) at GW (red) and ZS (blue) stations for annual and austral seasons. The solid circle/triangle and dashed line represents the observations and 5-year-moving average, respectively (°C)"

Figure 4

For monthly average and monthly standard deviation for Tmean (solid line), Tmin (dotted line with triangle), and Tmax (broken line with solid circle) (°C) at GW (black) and ZS (red) "

Figure 5

The annual variations during 1985/1989–2015 for indices of temperature extremes, including warm indices (TXx, TNx, TN90, TX90, MD) and cold indices (TXn, TNn, TN10, TX10)"

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