Temperature variation in the South Orkney Islands, maritime Antarctic

Meteorological records at Signy Station in the South Orkney Islands (SOIs) have recently been digitized to cover the period of 1947–1995. This study compares the newly available near-surface air temperatures at Signy with those from a nearby station, Orcadas and with reanalysis datasets to provide a more comprehensive picture of the weather and climate variability in the SOIs. Temperatures from both stations show a higher degree of variability in winter than summer, but the variability differs in terms of its relationship to the dominant wind directions and sea ice influences. The two stations differ markedly in terms of their respective warm temperature events, largely due to orography-induced föhn winds at Signy Station as northwesterlies flow over Coronation Island. ERA5 reproduces the monthly to annual averages exceedingly well but underestimates both cold and warm tails of station temperatures. Temperature trends in the SOIs are also considered in terms of changes in large-scale circulation and the sea surface temperature over the Brazil-Falkland Confluence. However, caution is required in interpreting the long-term temperature trends estimated from reanalysis data as most of the reanalyses show a cold bias before 1979, which is most likely caused by misrepresentation of the sea ice.


Publication status:
Authors: Lu, Hua ORCIDORCID record for Hua Lu, Colwell, Steve, King, John ORCIDORCID record for John King, Orr, Andrew ORCIDORCID record for Andrew Orr, Phillips, Tony ORCIDORCID record for Tony Phillips, Dobb, Emilia, Xue, Jonathan, Kucieba, Sabina, Phillips, Guy, Marshall, Gareth ORCIDORCID record for Gareth Marshall

On this site: Andrew Orr, Emilia Dobb, Gareth Marshall, Guy Phillips, Hua Lu, John King, Sabina Kucieba, Steve Colwell, Tony Phillips
30 December, 2023
International Journal of Climatology / 43
18pp / 7987-8004
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