Chapter 10Time-Dependent Response and the Ocean

Understanding and estimating the evolving temporal response of the system due to a time-dependent forcing are key problems in climate theory. In particular, the layers of air, land, and water have an effective heat capacity that can delay the response to a time-dependent stimulus. The column of air above land for forcing frequencies in the annual cycle range involves only a fraction of the atmospheric column's heat capacity. This effect can delay the warmest day of the year from the day of maximum heating by up to a month. Over open ocean, the same delay can be a whole season or mathematically a quarter of a cycle. A quarter cycle delay turns out to be the maximum when the effective heat capacity ...

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