Makama, EK; Lim, HS (2020). Variability and Trend in Integrated Water Vapour from ERA-Interim and IGRA2 Observations over Peninsular Malaysia. ATMOSPHERE, 11(9), 1012.

Integrated water vapour (IWV) is the total amount of precipitable water in an atmospheric column between the Earth's surface and space. The implication of its variability and trend on the Earth's radiation budget and precipitation makes its monitoring on a regular basis important. ERA-Interim reanalysis (ERA) and radiosonde (RS) data from 1988 to 2018 were used to investigate variability and trend in IWV over Peninsular Malaysia. ERA performed excellently when gauged with RS. Trend analysis was performed using the non-parametric Mann-Kendall and Theil-Sen slope estimator tests. ERA and RS IWV revealed double fluctuations at the seasonal time scale, with maxima in May and November, which are the respective beginnings of the southwest monsoon (SWM) and northeast monsoon (NEM) seasons, as well as coincidental peaks of precipitation in the region. IWV decreased in a southeast-northwest orientation, with regional maximum domiciled over the southeastern tip of the region. Steep orography tended to shape intense horizontal gradients along the edges of the peninsular, with richer gradients manifesting along the western boundary during SWM, which harbours more water vapour in the peninsular. IWV trends, both at the annual and seasonal time series, were positive and statistically significant at the 95% level across the stations, except at Kota Bharu, where a nonsignificant downward trend manifested. Trends were mostly higher in the NEM, with the greatest rate being 0.20 +/- 0.42 kgm(-2)found at Penang. Overall, the IWV trend in Peninsular Malaysia was positive and consistent with the upward global changes in IWV reported elsewhere.