On the Detection of Onset and Activity of the Indian Summer Monsoon Using GPS RO Refractivity Profiles

V. V. M. Jagannadha Rao, M. Venkat Ratnam, Y. Durga Santhi, M. Roja Raman, M. Rajeevan, S. Vijaya Bhaskara Rao
2013 Monthly Weather Review  
Global positioning system (GPS) radio occultation (RO) data available during 2001-10 have been used to examine the variations in the refractivity during the onset of Indian summer monsoon (ISM) over the east Arabian Sea (58-158N, 658-758E). An enhancement of 5-10 N-units in the refractivity is observed around 4.8 km (;600 hPa) a few days (9.23 6 3.6 days) before onset of the monsoon over Kerala, India. This is attributed to moisture buildup over the Arabian Sea during the monsoon onset phase. A
more » ... sudden increase (1.5-2 K) in mean upper-tropospheric temperature at the time of onset and during the active phase of the monsoon is attributed to convective activity and the release of latent heat. On the day of monsoon onset over Kerala, an appreciable dip in the refractivity is observed that persisted for 1-3 days followed by an enhancement in refractivity with the active phase of the monsoon. An arbitrary value of 128 N-units difference between 4.8 km (;600 hPa) and 16 km (;100 hPa) coupled with a dip in refractivity on the day of monsoon arrival might give an indication of clear transition of atmospheric conditions and the detection of monsoon onset. Further, a good relation is also found between the activity of monsoon and variability in the refractivity.
doi:10.1175/mwr-d-12-00180.1 fatcat:knoerwdenvgmbfo46hohphswae