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The climate of Macquarie Island and its role in atmospheric monitoring


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Streten, NA 1988 , 'The climate of Macquarie Island and its role in atmospheric monitoring' , Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania, vol. 122, no. 1 , pp. 91-106 .

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An analysis is made of the principal climatic elements at Macquarie Island in relation to the general
circulation of the high latitudes of the southern hemisphere. The climate is characterised by a high frequency of strong
west to northwesterly winds and frequent gales, low variability of temperature, a high frequency of low cloud and fog,
and a high number of days with precipitation throughout the year. In general, the climate is typical of a higher
mid-latitude oceanic island, and its features are compared with others in the circumpolar Southern Ocean.
From a different perspective the island occupies a unique geographic site. This makes it extremely valuable as a
meteorological observatory, enabling regular surface and upper air observations for day-to-day global analysis and
forecasting, and providing climatic data representative of the higher southern mid-latitudes. Despite the advent of new
observational techniques (such as satellite-reporting drifting ocean buoys, satellite cloud imagery and satellite-derived
atmospheric temperature profiles), the observations from Macquarie Island conttnue to constitute essential calibration
data for space-derived measurements and provide the long-term continuity only possible at a fixed baseline station. The
importance of these data is stressed; not only with respect to the standard meteorological observations but also to the
measurement of ozone, carbon dioxide and other atmospheric trace constituents which are becoming increasingly
recognised as significant in studies of long-term climatic change.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Streten, NA
Keywords: Royal Society of Tasmania, RST, Van Diemens Land, natural history, science, ecology, taxonomy, botany, zoology, geology, geography, papers & proceedings, Australia, UTAS Library
Journal or Publication Title: Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania
ISSN: 0080-4703
Collections: Royal Society Collection > Papers & Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania
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Copyright Royal Society of Tasmania

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