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  1. Abstract

    Sudden stratospheric warmings (SSWs) are the most dramatic events in the wintertime stratosphere. Such extreme events are characterized by substantial disruption to the stratospheric polar vortex, which can be categorized into displacement and splitting types depending on the morphology of the disrupted vortex. Moreover, SSWs are usually followed by anomalous tropospheric circulation regimes that are important for subseasonal-to-seasonal prediction. Thus, monitoring the genesis and evolution of SSWs is crucial and deserves further advancement. Despite several analysis methods that have been used to study the evolution of SSWs, the ability of deep learning methods has not yet been explored, mainly due to the relative scarcity of observed events. To overcome the limited observational sample size, we use data from historical simulations of the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model version 6 to identify thousands of simulated SSWs, and use their spatial patterns to train the deep learning model. We utilize a convolutional neural network combined with a variational auto-encoder (VAE)—a generative deep learning model—to construct a phase diagram that characterizes the SSW evolution. This approach not only allows us to create a latent space that encapsulates the essential features of the vortex structure during SSWs, but also offers new insights into its spatiotemporal evolution mapping onto the phase diagram. The constructed phase diagram depicts a continuous transition of the vortex pattern during SSWs. Notably, it provides a new perspective for discussing the evolutionary paths of SSWs: the VAE gives a better-reconstructed vortex morphology and more clearly organized vortex regimes for both displacement-type and split-type events than those obtained from principal component analysis. Our results provide an innovative phase diagram to portray the evolution of SSWs, in which particularly the splitting SSWs are better characterized. Our findings support the future use of deep learning techniques to study the underlying dynamics of extreme stratospheric vortex phenomena, and to establish a benchmark to evaluate model performance in simulating SSWs.

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  2. Abstract

    Arctic amplification (AA), referring to the phenomenon of amplified warming in the Arctic compared to the warming in the rest of the globe, is generally attributed to the increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere. However, little attention has been paid to the mechanisms and quantitative variations of AA under decreasing levels of CO2, when cooling where the Arctic region is considerably larger than over the rest of the planet. Analyzing climate model experiments forced with a wide range of CO2concentrations (from 1/8× to 8×CO2, with respect to preindustrial levels), we show that AA indeed occurs under decreasing CO2concentrations, and it is stronger than AA under increasing CO2concentrations. Feedback analysis reveals that the Planck, lapse-rate, and albedo feedbacks are the main contributors to producing AAs forced by CO2increase and decrease, but the stronger lapse-rate feedback associated with decreasing CO2level gives rise to stronger AA. We further find that the increasing CO2concentrations delay the peak month of AA from November to December or January, depending on the forcing strength. In contrast, decreasing CO2levels cannot shift the peak of AA earlier than October, as a consequence of the maximum sea-ice increase in September which is independent of forcing strength. Such seasonality changes are also presented in the lapse-rate feedback, but do not appear in other feedbacks nor in the atmospheric and oceanic heat transport processeses. Our results highlight the strongly asymmetric responses of AA, as evidenced by the different changes in its intensity and seasonality, to the increasing and decreasing CO2concentrations. These findings have significant implications for understanding how carbon removal could impact the Arctic climate, ecosystems, and socio-economic activities.

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 25, 2024
  3. Abstract

    The observed winter Barents-Kara Sea (BKS) sea ice concentration (SIC) has shown a close association with the second empirical orthogonal function (EOF) mode of Eurasian winter surface air temperature (SAT) variability, known as Warm Arctic Cold Eurasia (WACE) pattern. However, the potential role of BKS SIC on this WACE pattern of variability and on its long-term trend remains elusive. Here, we show that from 1979 to 2022, the winter BKS SIC and WACE association is most prominent and statistically significant for the variability at the sub-decadal time scale for 5–6 years. We also show the critical role of the multi-decadal trend in the principal component of the WACE mode of variability for explaining the overall Eurasian winter temperature trend over the same period. Furthermore, a large multi-model ensemble of atmosphere-only experiments from 1979 to 2014, with and without the observed Arctic SIC forcing, suggests that the BKS SIC variations induce this observed sub-decadal variability and the multi-decadal trend in the WACE. Additionally, we analyse the model simulated first or the leading EOF mode of Eurasian winter SAT variability, which in observations, closely relates to the Arctic Oscillation (AO). We find a weaker association of this mode to AO and a statistically significant positive trend in our ensemble simulation, opposite to that found in observation. This contrasting nature reflects excessive hemispheric warming in the models, partly contributed by the modelled Arctic Sea ice loss.

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  4. The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted most countries in the world. Analyzing COVID-19 data from these countries together is a prominent challenge. Under the sponsorship of NSF REU, this paper describes our experience with a ten-week project that aims to guide an REU scholar to develop a physics-guided graph attention network to predict the global COVID- 19 Pandemics. We mainly presented the preparation, implementation, and dissemination of the addressed project. The COVID-19 situation in a country could be dramatically different from that of others, which suggests that COVID-19 pandemic data are generated based on different mechanisms, making COVID-19 data in different countries follow different probability distributions. Learning more than one hundred underlying probability distributions for countries in the world from large scale COVID- 19 data is beyond a single machine learning model. To address this challenge, we proposed two team-learning frameworks for predicting the COVID-19 pandemic trends: peer learning and layered ensemble learning framework. This addressed framework assigns an adaptive physics-guided graph attention network (GAT) to each learning agent. All the learning agents are fabricated in a hierarchical architecture, which enables agents to collaborate with each other in peer-to-peer and cross-layer way. This layered architecture shares the burden of large-scale data processing on machine learning models of all units. Experiments are run to verify the effectiveness of our approaches. The results indicate the proposed ensemble outperforms baseline methods. Besides being documented on GitHub, this work has resulted in two journal papers. 
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  5. Human experience involvement in existing operations of airborne Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) systems and off-line processing of collected LIDAR data make the acquisition process of airborne LIDAR point cloud less adaptable to environment conditions. This work develops a deep reinforcement learning-enabled framework for adaptive airborne LIDAR point cloud acquisition. Namely, the optimization of the airborne LIDAR operation is modeled as a Markov decision process (MDP). A set of LIDAR point cloud processing methods are proposed to derive the state space, action space, and reward function of the MDP model. A DRL algorithm, Deep Q-Network (DQN), is used to solve the MDP. The DRL model is trained in a flexible virtual environment by using simulator AirSim. Extensive simulation demonstrates the efficiency of the proposed framework. 
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  6. Key Points The external radiative forcing is the primary driver of the 1979–2013 warming for April–September, with varying decadal warming rates The interdecadal Pacific and Atlantic multidecadal variability intensify/dampen the warming when transitioning to positive/negative phase The combined effects of these factors reproduce the observed varied pace of decadal Arctic troposphere warming during 1979–2013 
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