AbstractDaytime (0800–2000 Beijing time) and nighttime (2000–0800 Beijing time) precipitation at approximately 2100 stations in China from 1979 to 2014 was used to evaluate eight current reanalyses. Daytime, nighttime, and nighttime–daytime contrast of precipitation were examined in aspects of climatology, seasonal cycle, interannual variability, and trends. The results show that the ECMWF interim reanalysis (ERA-Interim), ERA-Interim/Land, Japanese 55-year Reanalysis (JRA-55), and NCEP Climate Forecast System Reanalysis (CFSR) can reproduce the observed spatial pattern of nighttime–daytime contrast in precipitation amount, exhibiting a positive center over the eastern Tibetan Plateau and a negative center over southeastern China. All of the reanalyses roughly reproduce seasonal variations of nighttime and daytime precipitation, but not always nighttime–daytime contrast. The reanalyses overestimate drizzle and light precipitation frequencies by greater than 31.5% and underestimate heavy precipitation frequencies by less than −30.8%. The reanalyses successfully reproduce interannual synchronizations of daytime and nighttime precipitation frequencies and amounts with an averaged correlation coefficient r of 0.66 against the observed data but overestimate their year-to-year amplitudes by approximately 64%. The trends in nighttime, daytime, and nighttime–daytime contrast of the observed precipitation amounts are mainly dominated by their frequencies (r = 0.85). Less than moderate precipitation frequency has exhibited a significant downward trend (−2.5% decade−1 during nighttime and −1.7% decade−1 during daytime) since 1979, which is roughly captured by the reanalyses. However, only JRA-55 captures the observed trend of nighttime precipitation intensity (2.4% decade−1), while the remaining reanalyses show negative trends. Overall, JRA-55 and CFSR provide the best reproductions of the observed nighttime–daytime contrast in precipitation intensity, although they have considerable room for improvement.
Journal of Climate – American Meteorological Society
Published: Aug 28, 2017
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