عنوان مقاله [English]
Air temperature is one of the principal climate variables with important direct and indirect socio-economic impacts. Among different factors affecting the climate variability of different regions, the low-frequency atmospheric phenomena have attracted the attention of climatologists because of their role in the fluctuations of the climate system in time scales on the order of years and decades. Since these phenomena affect the atmospheric conditions of regions far from their sources, they are called teleconnection patterns. Teleconnection patterns cause large-scale changes in the atmospheric circulation and affect air temperature, precipitation, storm tracks and the position and intensity of jet streams. Therefore, they are of great significance for determining regional climate anomalies.
In this study, anomalies in the mean winter surface (2 m level) temperature of Iran are investigated for the period 1950 to 2010. Winter of each year is defined as January and February of that year and December of the previous year. The study is conducted in three different scales, including Iran as the whole, six different regions of Iran separated according to three latitude and two longitude bands and the grid scale, using the monthly mean NCEP/NCAR reanalysis data. First, the reanalysis data of temperature were quality controlled, and years before 1967 were excluded from the study because of the poor quality of the data. Statistical analysis showed that there are significant positive correlations between the mean winter temperatures of different regions and between the mean winter temperature of each region and that averaged over Iran. The largest positive temperature anomalies in the 44 winters occurred in 1970, 1979, 1999 and 2010 and the largest negative anomalies occurred in the winters of 1972, 1973, 1989 and 2008.
Analysis of the mean winter geopotential height fields at different pressure levels in a domain covering 10–60 °N and 10°W –80 °E showed that there is a center of positive (negative) height anomaly over North-West Europe (North-East Atlantic) and a center of negative (positive) height anomaly over North-East Caspian Sea when the mean winter surface air temperature of Iran is anomalously low (high). The correlation coefficient is higher for upper atmospheric levels, and stays significant at 95% confidence level down to the 700 hPa level. In this regard, a new teleconnection index is introduced in the paper, to study the mean winter temperature anomalies in Iran, calculated as the mean winter 250hPa geopotential height anomaly over 50–60°E, 40–50°N minus that over 0–10 °E, 45–55 °N. This resembles a teleconnection pattern which is similar to that of the East Atlantic/West Russia (EA/WR: Barnston and Livezey, 1987; Krichak et al., 2012) and the North Sea–Caspian Pattern (NCP; Kutil and Benaroch, 2002). The new index has a significant correlation with the EA/WR, and particularly with the NCP index. We found a significant positive correlation between the average winter temperature in different regions of Iran and the introduced index which was much higher than those between the mean winter temperature of Iran and both EA/WR and NCP teleconnection indices. Comparison between the temperature and geopotential height anomalies at different levels reveals that the middle troposphere temperature is anomalously high (low) in winters that geopotential height is positively (negatively) anomalous. Also, the wind field shows a positive (negative) anomaly over the Caspian Sea and a negative (positive) anomaly over Europe when the mean winter air temperature in Iran is higher (lower) than normal.