The spatial pattern of monthly air temperature of the Tibetan Plateau and its implications for the geo-ecology pattern of the Plateau
YAO Yonghui1(),ZHANG Baiping1,2()
1. State Key Laboratory of Resource and Environmental Information System, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
2. Jiangsu Center for Collaborative Innovation in Geographical Information Resource Development and Application, Nanjing 210023, China
The immense and towering Tibetan Plateau (TP) acts as a heating source and shapes the climate of not only the Eurasian continent but also the entire world. Currently, air temperature of the plateau is usually obtained from discrete meteorological observational data using a series of statistical analyses and spatial interpolation. However, the interpolation accuracy is low due to the scarcity of meteorological observation stations, and little is quantitatively known about the detailed temperature pattern of the TP. According to Modis-based estimated air temperature data, this paper firstly studies the detailed spatial pattern of air temperature of the TP; Then it analyzes the spatial changes of isotherm altitudes of -10℃, -5℃, 0℃, 5℃, 10℃ for every month. Isotherm altitudes are extracted from Aster GDEM; Thirdly, this paper discusses the implication of air temperature of TP for treelines and snowlines based on 148 snowline data and 267 treeline data. The results show that: 1) isotherms have a trend of rising from the eastern and northeastern edges of the plateau to the interior and about 500-2000 m higher in the interior than in the eastern and northeastern edges; 2) the northwestern plateau, or the Qiangtang plateau and the Hoh Xil region, are the coldest regions of the TP, where air temperatures are below 0℃ for seven months and lower than -10 ℃ for three or four months in a year; the southern and central plateau, especially the north flank of Himalaya - the south flank of Gangdisê Mts., the north flank of Gangdisê Mts. - the south flank of Tanggula Mts., and the great river valleys, are quite warm, with monthly mean air temperatures between 5-10 ℃ for five months and above 10 ℃ for three months in a year; especially, air temperature of the coldest month is above 0℃ below the elevations of 3500-4500 m at Lhasa, Linzhi and Zuogong. 3) The highest treeline and snowline of the Northern Hemisphere are distributed in the southeastern and southwestern parts of the plateau, respectively, revealing a significant effect of air temperature on the geo-ecological pattern of the TP.
姚永慧, 张百平. 青藏高原气温空间分布规律及其生态意义[J]. 地理研究, 2015, 34(11): 2084-2094.
YAO Yonghui, ZHANG Baiping. The spatial pattern of monthly air temperature of the Tibetan Plateau and its implications for the geo-ecology pattern of the Plateau. GEOGRAPHICAL RESEARCH, 2015, 34(11): 2084-2094.
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