One of the best studied Stratospheric Sudden Warmings (SSWs), this image shows the event of the winter of 1979, at the onset on February 23. As no photos of these global-scale atmospheric events can be taken, this computer rendering of observational data makes the scale and amplitude of this SSW visible.
Depicted is anomalous geopotential height, positive in red and negative in blue, of this so-called splitting event.
Happening on the large (global) scale and within a few days, SSWs are known to influence regional surface weather through extreme events such as droughts and cold spells for months, thus connecting orders of magnitude in spatial and temporal scales.
Taken on 23
Submitted on 27 February 2015
Credit: Martin Jucker (distributed via imaggeo.egu.eu)
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