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Creators/Authors contains: "Podglajen, Aurelien"

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  1. Abstract

    Tropical waves play an important role in driving the quasi‐biennial oscillation of zonal winds in the tropical stratosphere. In our study we analyze these waves based on temperature observations from the 2021–2022 Strateole‐2 campaign when the Reel‐down Atmospheric Temperature Sensor (RATS) was successfully deployed for the first time. RATS provides long‐duration, continuous and simultaneous high‐resolution temperature observations at two altitudes (balloon float level and 200 m below) allowing for an analysis of vertical wavelengths. This separation distance was chosen to focus on waves near the resolution limit of reanalyses. Here, we found tropical waves with periods between about 6 hr and 2 days, with vertical wavelengths between 1.5 and 5 km, respectively. Comparing our results to Fifth generation European Centre for Medium‐Range Weather Forecasts (ERA5) reanalyses we found good agreement for waves with a period longer than 1 day. However, the ERA5 amplitudes of higher‐frequency waves are under‐estimated, and the temporal evolution of most wave packets differs from the observations.

  2. Abstract

    Atmospheric waves in the tropical tropopause layer are recognized as a significant influence on processes that impact global climate. For example, waves drive the quasi‐biennial oscillation (QBO) in equatorial stratospheric winds and modulate occurrences of cirrus clouds. However, the QBO in the lower stratosphere and thin cirrus have continued to elude accurate simulation in state‐of‐the‐art climate models and seasonal forecast systems. We use first‐of‐their‐kind profile measurements deployed beneath a long‐duration balloon to provide new insights into impacts of fine‐scale waves on equatorial cirrus clouds and the QBO just above the tropopause. Analysis of these balloon‐borne measurements reveals previously uncharacterized fine‐vertical‐scale waves (<1 km) with large horizontal extent (>1000 km) and multiday periods. These waves affect cirrus clouds and QBO winds in ways that could explain current climate model shortcomings in representing these stratospheric influences on climate. Accurately simulating these fine‐vertical‐scale processes thus has the potential to improve sub‐seasonal to near‐term climate prediction.