The Azimuth Project
North Atlantic Oscillation (Rev #2)


According to Hurrell,“The North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) is one of the most prominent and recurrent patterns of atmospheric circulation variability. It dictates climate variability from the eastern seaboard of the United States to Siberia and from the Arctic to the subtropical Atlantic, especially during boreal winter, so variations in the NAO are important to society and for the environment. Understanding the processes that govern this variability is, therefore, of high priority, especially in the context of global climate change. There is no unique way to define the spatial structure of the NAO, or thus its temporal evolution, but several common approaches are often illustrated. The relationship between the NAO and variations in surface temperature, storms and precipitation, and thus the economy, as well as the ocean and ecosystem responses to NAO variability.

Although the NAO is a mode of variability internal to the atmosphere, indices of it exhibit decadal variability and trends. That not all of its variability can be attributed to intraseasonal stochastic atmospheric processes points to a role for external forcings and, perhaps, a small but useful amount of predictability. The surface, stratospheric and anthropogenic processes may influence the phase and amplitude of the NAO.“


Harell,An Overview of the North Atlantic Oscillation

Rodwell, 1999, Oceanic Forcing of the wintertime NAO

“Evaluation of the North Atlantic Oscillation as simulated by a coupled climate model” TJ Osborn, KR Briffa, SFB Tett, PD Jones,Climate Dynamics 1999, Springer