Considering the complex spatial and vertical structure of the South Asian summer monsoon (SASM), the validation of a regional climate model (RCM) dealing with only a few surface variables is considered insufficient. Therefore, we have proposed an evaluation framework for the better assessment of the capability of an RCM in capturing the fundamental structure of SASM. This framework has been applied to the regional climate model REMO using ERA40 lateral boundary conditions for the period 1961–2000.
The application of framework yielded satisfactory performance of REMO in capturing the lower, middle, and upper component of the SASM circulation. REMO has higher correlation between different SASM indices as compared to ERA40, showing its ability in capturing the dynamical link between these indices better than ERA40. We have employed different criteria for the assessment of the monsoon onset, and the movement of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) during the boreal summer and REMO has captured these phenomena reasonably well. The model has also shown the association of the meridional temperature gradient with the easterly shear of zonal winds. These results lead us to the conclusion that REMO is well suited for long-term climate change simulations to examine projected future changes in the complex SASM system. Copyright © 2011 Royal Meteorological Society