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Title:Impacts of large-scale soil moisture anomalies on regional hydroclimate in southeastern South America
Author(s):Bieri, Carolina A.
Advisor(s):Dominguez, Francina
Department / Program:Atmospheric Sciences
Discipline:Atmospheric Sciences
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Land-atmosphere interactions
climate variability
climate modeling
soil moisture
EOF analysis
Abstract:Advancing our understanding of the hydroclimate of southeastern South America (SESA) is imperative for a number of reasons. Within SESA is the La Plata River basin (LPRB), the second-largest river basin in South America. The LPRB includes a diverse array of ecosystems. The region is also significant for agricultural interests, and a majority of the economic output of five South American nations originates in the LPRB. Many studies of soil moisture-atmosphere coupling focus on local processes. This study adopts an emphasis on large-scale soil moisture anomalies within the LPRB and investigates the effects of these anomalies on regional-scale atmospheric conditions. Multivariate empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analysis is performed using two-meter temperature, root-zone soil moisture, and precipitation data sourced from atmospheric reanalysis products for multiple decades. EOF analysis allows us to jointly extract the dominant modes of variability for these three variables. We find that the dominant EOF pattern is consistent with a positive relation between soil moisture and precipitation, while the second EOF pattern is consistent with a negative relation between these two variables. The effects of amplified soil moisture anomalies are tested using CESM simulations in which soil moisture is decreased within a region in SESA. The CESM simulations suggest that dry soil moisture is initially co-located with decreased precipitation, then changes in atmospheric circulation associated with a thermal low draw moisture into the region and lead to increased precipitation. This study can add to current knowledge of land-atmosphere interactions in SESA. Additionally, its outcomes may be applied to advances in atmospheric prediction.
Issue Date:2019-12-09
Rights Information:Copyright 2019 Carolina Bieri
Date Available in IDEALS:2020-03-02
Date Deposited:2019-12

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