Journal of Geographical Sciences

, Volume 12, Issue 1, pp 99–107 | Cite as

Anomaly feature of seasonal frozen soil variations on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

  • Wang Cheng-hai
  • Dong Wen-jie
  • Wei Zhi-gang
Climale Change


The seasonal frozen soil on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau has strong response to climate change, and its freezing-thawing process also affects East Asia climate. In this paper, the freezing soil maximum depth of 46 stations covering 1961–1999 on the plateau is analyzed by rotated experience orthogonal function (REOF). The results show that there are four main frozen anomaly regions on the plateau, i.e., the northeastern, southeastern and southern parts of the plateau and Qaidam Basin. The freezing soil depths of the annual anomaly regions in the above representative stations show that there are different changing trends. The main trend, except for the Qaidam Basin, has been decreasing since the 1980s, a sign of the climate warming. Compared with the 1980s, on the average, the maximum soil depth decreased by about 0.02 m, 0.05 m and 0.14 m in the northeastern, southeastern and southern parts of the plateau, but increased by about 0.57 m in the Qaidam Basin during the 1990s. It means there are different responses to climate system in the above areas. The spectrum analysis reveals different change cycles: in higher frequency there is an about 2-year long cycle in Qaidam Basin and southern part of the plateau in the four representative areas whereas in lower frequency there is an about 14-year long cycle in all the four representative areas due to the combined influence of different soil textures and solutes in four areas.

Key words

Qinghai-Tibet Plateau seasonal frozen soil rotated empirical orthogonal function analysis anomaly areas 

CLC number

P931.8 P642.14 


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Copyright information

© Springer 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wang Cheng-hai
    • 1
    • 2
  • Dong Wen-jie
    • 3
  • Wei Zhi-gang
    • 2
  1. 1.College of Resource and Environmental ScienceLanzhou UniversityLanzhouChina
  2. 2.Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research InstituteCASLanzhouChina
  3. 3.Institute of Atmospheric PhysicsCASBeijingChina

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