Relation of the double-ITCZ bias to the atmospheric energy budget in climate models

Ori Adam*, Tapio Schneider, Florent Brient, Tobias Bischoff

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


We examine how tropical zonal mean precipitation biases in current climate models relate to the atmospheric energy budget. Both hemispherically symmetric and antisymmetric tropical precipitation biases contribute to the well-known double-Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) bias; however, they have distinct signatures in the energy budget. Hemispherically symmetric biases in tropical precipitation are proportional to biases in the equatorial net energy input; hemispherically antisymmetric biases are proportional to the atmospheric energy transport across the equator. Both relations can be understood within the framework of recently developed theories. Atmospheric net energy input biases in the deep tropics shape both the symmetric and antisymmetric components of the double-ITCZ bias. Potential causes of these energetic biases and their variation across climate models are discussed.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)7670-7677
Number of pages8
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number14
StatePublished - 28 Jul 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
©2016. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.


  • ITCZ
  • atmospheric energy budget
  • double-ITCZ bias


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