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The Atmospheric Branch of the Hydrological Cycle over the Negro and Madeira River Basins in the Amazon Region
Published: 05 June 2018 by MDPI in Water
MDPI, Volume 10; 10.3390/w10060738
Abstract: The Amazon region, in South America, contains the largest rainforest and biodiversity in the world, and plays an important role in the regional and global hydrological cycle. In the present study, we identified the main sources of moisture of two subbasins of the Amazon River Basin, the Negro and Madeira River Basins respectively. The source-sink relationships of atmospheric moisture are investigated. The analysis is performed for the period from 1980–2016. The results confirm two main oceanic moisture sources for both basins, i.e., oceanic regions in the Tropical North and South Atlantic oceans. On the continents are, the Negro River Basin itself, and nearby regions to the northeast. For the Madeira River Basin, the most important continental sources are itself, and surrounding regions of the South American continent. Forward-trajectory analysis of air masses over the source regions is used to compute the moisture contribution to precipitation over basins. Oceanic (continental) sources play the most important role in the Negro River Basin (Madeira River Basin). The moisture contribution from the Tropical North Atlantic region modulates the onset and demise of the rainy season in the Negro River Basin; while the moisture contribution from the rest of the Amazon River Basin, the Madeira Basin itself, and Tropical South America leads to the onset of the rainy season in the Madeira River Basin. These regions also played the most important role in decreasing the moisture supply during most severe dry episodes in both basins. During ‘’El Niño’’, generally occurs a reduction (increase) of the moisture contribution to the Negro River Basin (Madeira River Basin; mainly from April to August) from almost all the sources, causing a decrease in the precipitation. Generally, the contrary occurs during ‘’La Niña’’.
Keywords: Precipitation, Moisture Transport, Water level, Hydrological cycle, Madeira River Basin, Negro River Basin, Sources of Moisture, Dry Episodes
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