Behavior of the ITCZ second band near the Peruvian coast during the 2017 coastal El Niño

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Vannia Aliaga-Nestares
Diego Rodriguez-Zimmermann
Nelson Quispe-Gutiérrez


The behavior of the second band of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) near the Peruvian coast during early 2017 is studied, using precipitation, surface winds, sea surface temperature (SST) and atmospheric variables in different isobaric levels. The proposal of a daily index (Ia) to identify opportunely the formation of this band and the Lorenz energy terms in the region is also considered. This band was present from late January to early April 2017, associated with an anomalous dipole of sea level pressure between the east and west eastern Equatorial Pacific that configured anomalously northerly surface winds and the release of southeasterly trade winds near Peru. In medium levels, a zonally oriented positive mixing ratio anomaly was observed in early March over the ITCZ second band, associated with heavy rain systems over the northern Peruvian coastal region. In the same period, positive anomalies of divergence in high tropospheric levels were observed. The daily Ia index allowed an effective detection of the ITCZ second band 11 days before the maximum coastal precipitation, and the Lorenz energy terms showed eddy kinetic energy (KE) peaks in January and February and a contribution of barotropic instability in equatorial regions.


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