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Liebmann B., G. N. Kiladis, D. Allured, et al. (January 2011): Mechanisms Associated with Large Daily Rainfall Events in Northeast Brazil. J. Climate, 24 (2), 376-396. doi:10.1175/2010JCLI3457.1

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The mechanisms resulting in large daily rainfall events in Northeast Brazil are analyzed using data filtering to exclude periods longer than 30 days. Composites of circulation fields that include all independent events do not reveal any obvious forcing mechanisms as multiple patterns contribute to Northeast Brazil precipitation variability. To isolate coherent patterns, subsets of events are selected based on anomalies that precede the Northeast Brazil precipitation events at different locations. The results indicate that at 10°S, 40°W, the area of lowest annual rainfall in Brazil, precipitation occurs mainly in association with trailing midlatitude synoptic wave trains originating in either hemisphere. Closer to the equator at 5°S, 37.5°W, an additional convection precursor is found to the west, with a spatial structure consistent with that of a Kelvin wave. Although these two sites are located within only several hundred kilometers of each other and the midlatitude patterns that induce precipitation appear to be quite similar, the dates on which large precipitation anomalies occur at each location are almost entirely independent, pointing to separate forcing mechanisms.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: PSD Publications
Divisions: Physical Sciences Division
DOI: 10.1175/2010JCLI3457.1