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    Role of soil moisture-atmosphere feedback during high temperature events in 2002 over Northeast Eurasia

    Erdenebat E, Sato T

    Extreme temperature, Soil moisture, Land–atmosphere interaction, Northeast Eurasia

    A comparison of soil moisture–temperature feedback processes during heat wave under different soil wetness.

    In summer 2002, abnormally high-temperature events and associated low soil moisture conditions were observed in Northeast Eurasia. In this study, two regional climate model experiments, one with and the other without soil moisture–atmosphere interaction, were conducted to investigate the role of soil moisture in surface air temperature and precipitation in Northeast Eurasia utilizing the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model. In the experiment without interaction, satellite-based soil moisture was prescribed. Under the persistent mid-tropospheric ridge pattern with prolonged clear skies, both experiments captured the magnitude of the extreme surface air temperature events. A comparison of the model experiments demonstrated that the mid-tropospheric ridge pattern was intensified by dry soil moisture conditions that further increase the surface air temperature. The temporal variability of surface air temperature for the experiments with and without soil moisture–atmosphere interaction reveals the strong coupling of soil moisture to surface air temperature in June–August, raising the possibility that extreme hot temperature events in Northeast Eurasia were strengthened by the soil moisture anomaly. These results also indicate that the impact of soil moisture–atmosphere coupling on surface air temperature varies spatially and temporally, having higher importance for the predictability of extreme high-temperature events in Northeast Eurasia during mid-summer. This also suggests that the performance of the land surface model in simulating appropriate land–atmosphere coupling intensity is a key to evaluating the impact of climate change on extreme heat events in this region.