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The Niger River Basin Moisture Sources. A Lagrangian Analysis
* 1 , 1, 2 , 1 , 1
1  Environmental Physics Laboratory (EPhysLab), Facultade de Ciencias, Universidad de Vigo, Ourense, Spain.
2  Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Institute of Astronomy, Geophysics and Atmospheric Sciences, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.


The Niger River basin (NRB) is located on the important climatic region of the African Sahel. In this work we use the Lagrangian tridimensional model FLEXPART v9.0, to identify and characterize the moisture sources for the NRB. The method allowed integrating the evaporation minus precipitation budget through 10 days backward trajectories and thus, identifying the origin of air masses residing over the NRB. The analysis was performed for 35 years from 1980 to 2014. There were identified the main seasonal climatological moisture sources of the NRB and quantify their contribution to the total moisture influx. At first day backward in time the NRB appears as the main moisture source, contributing less and less humidity to the particles during last days, suggesting the importance of local moisture supply to recycling process. Through the 10 days backward, the pattern of (E – P) shows the spatial expansion of sources and sinks regions. Across the year, the moisture supply to the NRB mainly comes from itself and the tropical-east south Atlantic Ocean, but are also important the rest of the sources located on the tropical-east north Atlantic Ocean near Africa, the Sahel surrounded regions, the Mediterranean Sea, the east Africa, the north-east Africa and less important small regions on central-equatorial Africa and the
tropical-west Indian Ocean.

Keywords: moisture sources; Lagrangian analysis; Niger River Basin