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Unformatted text preview: = 5.2 x 10 19 Joules/day or 6.0 x 10 14 Watts Storm strength dissipates when: Energy source (warm water) is lost • Storm moves over land • Storm moves over colder water El Nino – Southern Oscillation (ENSO) Coupled atmosphere-ocean phenomenon: • Trade winds • Sea Surface T • Rain patterns Characteristics of El Nino Originally observed by Peruvians: • Increased rainfall around December • Warming of surface ocean water • Disappearance of fish Now recognized as part of widespread phenomenon: • Unusually warm surface water across eastern Pacific • Changes in wind patterns • Drought is Australia and Indonesia • Violent storms along west coast of Americas Timing: • Twice/decade on average (but irregular) • Lasts 14 to 22 months • Usually begins in Jan-Feb, peaks Nov-Jan, then diminishes Evidence for El Nino over thousands of years Very variable: no two events are the same...
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This note was uploaded on 04/16/2008 for the course GEOS 104 taught by Professor Cox during the Spring '08 term at Williams.
- Spring '08