Articles | Volume 5, issue 2
Geosci. Model Dev., 5, 289–297, 2012
https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-5-289-2012

Special issue: PlioMIP: experimental design, mid-Pliocene boundary conditions...

Geosci. Model Dev., 5, 289–297, 2012
https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-5-289-2012

Model experiment description paper 09 Mar 2012

Model experiment description paper | 09 Mar 2012


Set-up and preliminary results of mid-Pliocene climate simulations with CAM3.1

Q. Yan1,2, Z. S. Zhang3,1, H. J. Wang4,1, Y. Q. Gao5,1, and W. P. Zheng6 Q. Yan et al.
  • 1Nansen-Zhu International Research Centre, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029, China
  • 2Graduate School of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • 3Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, UniResearch, Bergen 5007, Norway
  • 4Climate Change Research Center, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029, China
  • 5Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Center/Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, Bergen 5006, Norway
  • 6State Key Laboratory of Numerical Modeling for Atmospheric Sciences and Geophysical Fluid Dynamics, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029, China

Abstract. The mid-Pliocene warm period ~3.264 to 3.025 Ma) is a potential analogue for future climate under global warming. In this study, we use an atmospheric general circulation model (AGCM) called CAM3.1 to simulate the mid-Pliocene climate with the PRISM3D boundary conditions. The simulations show that the global annual mean surface air temperature (SAT) increases by 2.0 °C in the mid-Pliocene compared with the pre-industrial temperature. The greatest warming occurs at high latitudes of both hemispheres, with little change in SAT at low latitudes. The equator-to-pole SAT gradient is reduced in the mid-Pliocene simulation. The annual mean precipitation is enhanced by 3.6% of the pre-industrial value. However, the changes in precipitation are greater at low latitudes than at high latitudes.