Empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analyses (rotated or not) are widely used in climate research. In recent years there have been several studies in which EOF analyses were used to highlight potential physical mechanisms associated with climate variability. For example, several SST modes were identified such as the "Tropical Atlantic Dipole." the "Tropical Indian Ocean Dipole." and different SLP modes in the Northern Hemisphere winter. In this note it is emphasized that caution should be used when trying to interpret these statistically derived modes and their significance. Indeed, from a synthetic example it is shown that patterns derived from EOF analyses can be misleading at times and associated with very little climate physics.
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||Journal of Climate|
|Publication status||Published - 15 Jan 2002|