Low-frequency climate variability in the Atlantic basin during the 20th century

Y. M. Tourre, S. Paz, Y. Kushnir, W. B. White

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


From joint sea surface temperature/sea level pressure (SST/SLP) EOF analyses, low-frequency variability modes are compared. The multi-decadal oscillation (MDO) changed phases twice during the 20th century, with its north Atlantic SST patterns resembling the Atlantic multi-decadal oscillation (AMO). The quasi-decadal oscillation (QDO) SST patterns displayed a double tripole configuration over the entire Atlantic basin, leading to tropical inter-hemispheric out-of-phase relationship. From the mid-1960s onward, while SST anomalies were negative to the north (negative phases of MDO/AMO), the Sahelian drought persisted with a weaker hurricane power dissipation index (PDI). During that period, the QDO modulated the intensity of the Sahelian drought.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)180-185
Number of pages6
JournalAtmospheric Science Letters
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2010


  • Multi-decadal oscillation
  • Power dissipation index
  • Quasi-decadal oscillation
  • Sahelian drought

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atmospheric Science


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