Dynamical amplification of the stratospheric solar response simulated with the Chemistry-Climate Model LMDz-Reprobus
The impact of the 11-year solar cycle on the stratosphere and, in particular, on the polar regions is investigated using simulations from the Chemistry Climate Model (CCM) LMDz-Reprobus. The annual solar signal clearly shows a stratospheric response largely driven by radiative and photochemical processes, especially in the upper stratosphere. A month-by-months analysis suggests that dynamical feedbacks play an important role in driving the stratospheric response on short timescales. CCM outputs on a 10 days frequency indicate how, in the northern hemisphere, changes in solar heating in the winter polar stratosphere may influence the upward propagation of planetary waves and thus their deposition of momentum, ultimately modifying the strength of the mean stratospheric overtuning circulation at middle and high latitudes. The model results emphasize that the main temperature and wind responses in the northern hemisphere can be explained by a different timing in the occurrence of Sudden Stratospheric Warmings (SSWs) that are caused by small changes in planetary wave propagation depending on solar conditions. The differences between simulations forced by different solar conditions indicate successive positive and negative responses during the course of the winter. The solar minimum simulation generally indicates a slightly stronger polar vortex early in the winter while the solar maximum simulation experiences more early SSWs with a stronger wave-mean flow interaction and reduced zonal wind at mid-latitudes in the upper stratosphere. The opposite response is observed during mid-winter, in February, with more SSWs simulated for solar minimum conditions while solar maximum conditions are associated with a damped planetary wave activity and a reinforced vortex after the initial stratospheric warming period. In late winter, the response is again reversed, as noticed in the temperature differences, with major SSW mostly observed in the solar maximum simulation and less intense final warmings simulated for solar minimum conditions. Due to the non-zonal nature of SSWs, the stratospheric response presents high regional variability during the northern hemisphere winter. As a result, successive positive and negative responses are observed during the course of the winter.