Climate is largely a story of how heat is transported from the tropics to the pole. The task of transporting heat from the tropics to the pole is accomplished by circulations in the atmosphere and currents in the ocean .The motions in the atmosphere and the currents in the ocean are not independent of, but strongly coupled to each other as the atmosphere and ocean exchanges heat, water, momentum, and biochemical species. The processes that enable the state of the atmosphere and the state of the ocean to mutually influence each other are referred to as ocean-atmosphere coupling. Ocean-atmosphere coupling is a major cause of climate variability, such as the El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO). Current research in this area is focused on the coupling between the atmosphere and ocean over the Pacific region. We are particularly interested in the following questions: why is there ENSO, what causes the level of ENSO activity to vary, how ENSO responds to global warming, and what is the role of ENSO in the stability and sensitivity of the climate system?
Sun, Y., D.-Z. Sun, and L. Wu, 2011: Evidence from climate models for a role of ENSO events in shaping the climatological size and temperature of the warm-pool. J. Climate, Submitted.
Sun, D.-Z., 2008: The Diabatic Aspects of El Nino Southern Oscillation. To appear in "Climate Dynamics: Why Does Climate Vary?". AGU Geophysical Monograph, Edited by D.-Z. Sun and F. Bryan, AGU.
Penland C., D.-Z.Sun, and A. Capontondi, 2008: An Introduction to El Nino and La Nina. To appear in "Climate Dynamics: Why Does Climate Vary?". AGU Geophysical Monograph, Edited by D.-Z. Sun and F. Bryan, AGU.
Yu, Y., and D.-Z. Sun, 2008: Response of ENSO and the Mean State of the Tropical Pacific to Extratropical Cooling/Warming: A Study Using the IAP Coupled Model. J. Climate, Submitted.
Sun, D.-Z., 2007: The Role of ENSO in Regulating its Background State. In "Nonlinear Dynamics in Geosciences", pages 537-555, Springer New York, 604 pages, Edited by J. Elsner and A. Tsonis. Abstract / PDF
Sun, D.-Z. and T. Zhang 2006: A Regulatory Effect of ENSO on the Time-Mean Thermal Stratification of the Equatorial Upper Ocean. Geophys. Res. Lett., Vol. 33, L07710, doi:10.1029/2005GL025296. Abstract / PDF
Sun, D.-Z., 2004: The Control of Meridional Differential Heating Over the Level of ENSO activity: A Heat-Pump Hypothesis. page 71--83. In Earth's Climate: The Ocean-Atmosphere Interaction, AGU Geophysical Monograph, Vol. 147, 414 pages. Edited by C. Wang, S.-P. Xie, and J. Carton. Abstract / PDF
Sun, D.-Z., 2000a: Global climate change and ENSO: a theoretical framework.
Historical and Paleoclimatic Aspects of the Southern Oscillation, Multiscale variability and Global and Regional Impacts .443-463. Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, edited by Diaz H. F. and V. Markgraf, 476 pp. Abstract / PDF).