Topographically forced planetary wave breaking in the stratosphere

Long Li, Terrence R. Nathan, Donald J. Wuebbles

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The effects of topographically forced planetary wave breaking on eddy transport in the stratosphere are examined for zonal wavenumbers 1 and 2. Zonally averaged basic states representative of Northern Hemisphere (NH) and Southern Hemisphere (SH) winter conditions are used. Waves 1 and 2 each have significant wave breaking effects in the extratropical stratosphere during NH winter, whereas only wave 1 is important during SH winter. During NH winter, eddy mixing is dominated by wave 2 in the lower stratosphere and by wave 1 in the upper stratosphere and at the tropopause at low latitudes. The eddy diffusion effects due to the combined influence of waves 1 and 2 are much stronger in NH winter than in SH winter.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2953-2956
Number of pages4
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number21
StatePublished - Nov 1 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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