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Journal Articles Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres Year : 2010

West African Monsoon water cycle: 1. A hybrid water budget data set


This study investigates the West African Monsoon water cycle with the help of a new hybrid water budget data set developed within the framework of the African Monsoon Multidisciplinary Analyses. Surface water and energy fluxes are estimated from an ensemble of land surface model simulations forced with elaborate precipitation and radiation products derived from satellite observations, while precipitable water tendencies are estimated from numerical weather prediction analyses. Vertically integrated atmospheric moisture flux convergence is estimated as a residual. This approach provides an advanced, comprehensive atmospheric water budget, including evapotranspiration, rainfall, and atmospheric moisture flux convergence, together with other surface fluxes such as runoff and net radiation. The annual mean and the seasonal cycle of the atmospheric water budget are presented and the couplings between budget terms are discussed for three climatologically distinct latitudinal bands between 6°N and 20°N. West Africa is shown to be alternatively a net source and sink region of atmospheric moisture, depending on the season (a source during the dry season and a sink during the wet season). Several limiting and controlling factors of the regional water cycle are highlighted, suggesting strong sensitivity to atmospheric dynamics and surface radiation. Some insight is also given into the underlying smaller-scale processes. The relationship between evapotranspiration and precipitation is shown to be very different between the Sahel and the regions more to the south and partly controlled by net surface radiation. Strong correlations are found between precipitation and moisture flux convergence over the whole region from daily to interannual time scales. Causality is also established between monthly mean anomalies. Hence, precipitation anomalies are preceded by moisture flux convergence anomalies and followed by moisture flux divergence and evapotranspiration anomalies. The results are discussed in comparison to other studies.
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hal-00477346 , version 1 (25-02-2016)



Remi Meynadier, Olivier Bock, F. Guichard, A. Boone, P. Roucou, et al.. West African Monsoon water cycle: 1. A hybrid water budget data set. Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 2010, 115 (D19), pp.D19106. ⟨10.1029/2010JD013917⟩. ⟨hal-00477346⟩
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