Characteristics of Summertime Circulation Patterns for Southern Taiwan's Monsoon Rainfall from July to September

Abstract

This study documents the circulation features associated with summer monsoon rainfall over southern Taiwan from July through September over the period 1974 - 2001. Four types of monsoon systems, Monsoon I, I-TC, II and II-TC, are identified based on the daily rainfall data of 4 observational stations over southern Taiwan and the daily wind direction data of Lanyu. The total rainfall amount of Monsoon I and I-TC is much greater than that for Monsoon II and II-TC because the former two have more moisture. Monsoon I is characterized by a strong southwesterly flow over southern Taiwan due to the tightening of the pressure gradient between the monsoon trough and subtropical high over the western North Pacific. The Monsoon I-TC pattern exhibits a deep monsoon trough along with an anomalous cyclone near the East China Sea; this pattern drives a large volume of moisture that causes heavy rainfall over southern Taiwan. The circulation patterns of Monsoon I and I-TC resemble the flow pattern during the Mei-Yu or "Plum Rain" season from May through mid-July. The Monsoon II pattern reveals a trough south of Taiwan and accompanied by a strong ridge north to it. The convection is located near the southern flank of the monsoon trough. The circulation pattern of Monsoon II-TC yields a deep trough south of the westward protruding subtropical ridge. Additionally, the Monsoon II-TC is less significant because of the wide variety of the TC locations. The Monsoon II and II-TC patterns are similar to the Pacific-Japan (PJ) pattern that can affect weather in the East Asian summer monsoon area.

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