How Light-Absorbing Properties of Organic Aerosol Modify the Asian Summer Monsoon Rainfall?

Journal: Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres

Published: 2018-02-27

DOI: 10.1002/2017jd027642

Affiliations: 4

Authors: 4

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Research Highlight

Burning biomass moves the Asian monsoon

© Bart Brouwer/EyeEm/Getty

© Bart Brouwer/EyeEm/Getty

Aerosols released from burning biofuels could make Asia’s summer rains fall earlier and further south.

Brown carbon aerosols released from burning biomass absorb sunlight. This cools the surface below and warms the atmosphere, which can influence regional climate. A team led by researchers from the Institute for Basic Science in South Korea used climate observations and atmospheric models to simulate the role of brown carbon on monsoon rains across Asia. Their model suggests that organic aerosols, released from biomass burnt in Southeast Asia during March and April, bring monsoon rains to India earlier than usual. In East Asia, organic aerosols gathering to the north block incoming sunlight, which cools the surface. This stabilizes the air and shifts the summer rain southwards.

Measuring aerosols in the pre-monsoon months could help predict seasonal rainfall patterns across Asia, the researchers say.

Supported content

  1. Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres 123, 2244–2255 (2018). doi: 10.1002/2017JD027642
Institutions Share
Division of Earth Science, IBS, South Korea 0.25
Pusan National University (PNU), South Korea 0.25
NASA Earth Sciences Division, United States of America (USA) 0.25
Earth System Science Interdisciplinary Center (ESSIC), United States of America (USA) 0.25