The Antarctic temperature inversion

In the interior of the Antarctic ice sheet the surface temperature inversion averages over 25°C in the winter months. The negative buoyancy of the near-surface air drives the katabatic windflow, which has important consequences for the climate of Antarctica. Radiosonde measurements of the inversion are combined with recent GCM results in an attempt to assess the accuracy of proposed connections between the surface temperature and the inversion strength by comparing the limited observational verification data with the much wider coverage that a climate model allows. This indicates that, using multi-annual data, the continent-wide RMS error of deducing the inversion strength from a regression technique is approximately 2ċ9°C, whereas using a method based upon differences between summer and winter temperaures has a RMS error of approximately 2ċ5°C.


Publication status:
Authors: Connolley, W.M.

1 December, 1996
International Journal of Climatology / 16
Link to published article:<1333::AID-JOC96>3.0.CO;2-6