We use the tropospheric emission spectrometer measurements of the isotopic composition of water vapour (δD) in the lower troposphere to examine how changes in the distribution of convection and precipitation control water vapour amount and its isotope over the Indian Ocean. Measurements of the outgoing longwave radiation and vertical velocity from NCEP/NCAR Reanalysis and cloud ice water content from the Microwave Limb Sounder show distinct variations in convection due to a phase shift of both El Niño - Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD). These variations in convection are associated with changes in precipitation and water amount over the Western Indian Ocean (WIO) and Eastern Indian Ocean (EIO), depending on the phases of ENSO and/or the IOD. Over the EIO in 2006, induced by the interplay of both positive ENSO and IOD, it is drier and less isotopically depleted due to less frequent and/or weaker deep convective activity and subsequent precipitation compared to 2005. By contrast, over the WIO in 2006, an increase in water vapour and precipitation but little isotopic fractionation in water vapour of clear sky compared to 2005 is likely associated with an increase in both enhanced deep and shallow convection, caused by the positive IOD. Therefore, paleoarchives of water isotopes near Africa will be more difficult to relate to a single process because changes in convective activity result in changes in precipitation but do not have a significant impact on the isotopic composition of the source vapour based on this case analysis.
|Journal||Tellus, Series B: Chemical and Physical Meteorology|
|State||Published - 2015|
- Water vapour isotope