Newsletter No.8 October-1999

For the first time in the world, the discovery of a large scale climate change in the Indian Ocean has been made by Dr. Toshio Yamagata, Director of Climate Variations Research Program, Dr.Saji N.Hameed, and other research scientists. This climate change is equivalent to El Nino in the Pacific Ocean. The discovery of a Dipole Mode (DM)named by Dr.Yamagata and Dr.Hameed, has been reported in"Nature",a famous scientific magazine in the U.K., published on September 22,1999.

In the summer of 1994,we had record- breaking heat in Japan. In order to elucidate this cause, they investigated in detail the atmosphere- ocean data, such as sea- surface temperature, wind, precipitation etc. of the Indian Ocean for up to 40 years in the past. They came to the conclusion that when the east wind blows in the eastern part of the tropical Indian Ocean, the sea- surface temperature rises in the west, and as a result drought occurs in the eastern Indian Ocean, such as in Indonesia, and at the same time floods from India through to the east coast of the African continent.

In addition, the relation between the Indian Monsoon and El Nino in the Pacific has been wrapped up in a mystery, but now it has become clear that the DM lying between them complicates that relation. The climate researchers in the world pay attention to the above discoveries as a break through to make clear the climate changes in the wide area from the Indian Ocean through the Pacific Ocean.

The DM brings abnormal weather, such as fierce heat in Japan. We expect that the recent elucidation of detailed processes from generation through extinction of the DM could contribute to the climate variations prediction in Japan. This topic was played up by many newspapers and TV broadcasters etc., and created a sensation.

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