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J Air Waste Manag Assoc. 2006 Mar;56(3):306-16.

Characteristics of Asian dust transport based on synoptic meteorological analysis over Korea.

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Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Pusan National University, Busan, South Korea.


Classification of synoptic patterns and their correlation with dust events over East Asia were performed by means of cluster analysis. The average linkage and K-means clustering techniques were used to identify two major weather types during Asian dust events (ADEs; total 26 ADEs with 47 dusty days) of six spring seasons from 1996 to 2001. The first weather type mainly influenced neighboring Asian countries and frequently occurred with ADEs (approximately 23% of ADE cases). It mostly occurred under a surface high (low)-pressure system over the west (east) of the Korean peninsula coupled with an upper-level trough and cutoff low passage over the center of the Korean peninsula. It showed strong advection in the middle/ upper troposphere with both a high aerosol index and enhanced coarse particulate matter (PM) loading over Korea. In contrast, the second weather type was mostly associated with long distance or continental-scale transport and occurred less frequently with ADEs (approximately 15%). It appeared with an upper-level trough and a cutoff low vertically connected with a surface low system that was formed by a strong cyclonic vortex over the north of the Korean peninsula. There were weak advection, low aerosol index, and low coarse PM concentration over the Korean peninsula during the second weather type. In addition, it was found to be mostly associated with the trans-Pacific transport of Asian dust to the western coast of North America.

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