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Advances in Meteorology
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 584257, 11 pages
Research Article

A Dynamic Analysis of the Role of the Planetary- and Synoptic-Scale in the Summer of 2010 Blocking Episodes over the European Part of Russia

1Department of Soil, Environmental, and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Missouri, 302 ABNR Building, Columbia, MO 65211, USA
2A.M. Obukhov Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Russian Academy of Sciences, 3 Pyzhevsky, Moscow 119017, Russia
3Center of Excellence for Climate Change Research and Department of Meteorology, King Abdulaziz University, P.O. Box 80208, Jeddah 21589, Saudi Arabia

Received 21 June 2012; Revised 23 August 2012; Accepted 27 August 2012

Academic Editor: Klaus Dethloff

Copyright © 2012 Anthony R. Lupo et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


During the summer of 2010, an unusually persistent blocking episode resulted in anomalously warm dry weather over the European part of Russia. The excessive heat resulted in forest and peat fires, impacted terrestrial ecosystems, greatly increased pollution in urban areas, and increased mortality rates in the region. Using the National Centers for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) reanalysis datasets, the climatological and dynamic character of blocking events for summer 2010 and a precursor May blocking event were examined. We found that these events were stronger and longer lived than typical warm season events. Using dynamic methods, we demonstrate that the July 2010 event was a synoptic-scale dominant blocking event; unusual in the summer season. An analysis of phase diagrams demonstrated that the planetary-scale did not become stable until almost one week after block onset. For all other blocking events studied here and previously, the planetary-scale became stable around onset. Analysis using area integrated regional enstrophy (IRE) demonstrated that for the July 2010 event, synoptic-scale IRE increased at block onset. This was similar for the May 2010 event, but different from case studies examined previously that demonstrated the planetary-scale IRE was prominent at block onset.