Glacial-interglacial Indian summer monsoon dynamics (2011)

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The modern Indian summer monsoon (ISM) is characterized by exceptionally strong interhemispheric transport, indicating the importance of both Northern and Southern Hemisphere processes driving monsoon variability. Here, we present a high-resolution continental record from southwestern China that demonstrates the importance of interhemispheric forcing in driving ISM variability at the glacial-interglacial time scale as well. Interglacial ISM maxima are dominated by an enhanced Indian low associated with global ice volume minima. In contrast, the glacial ISM reaches a minimum, and actually begins to increase, before global ice volume reaches a maximum. We attribute this early strengthening to an increased cross-equatorial pressure gradient derived from Southern Hemisphere high-latitude cooling. This mechanism explains much of the nonorbital scale variance in the Pleistocene ISM record.
Year: 2011
Language: English
In: Science, 2011 Aug 5; 333(6043), 719-723 p.

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 Record created 2011-08-08, last modified 2013-01-17