Polar stratospheric temperatures are influenced by solar variability and the quasi-biennial oscillation, which is characterized by regular shifts in the strength and direction of stratospheric winds over the equator. Meteorological data suggest that the combination of these two factors also exerts a significant effect on temperatures throughout large regions of the lower atmosphere.
Indrani Roy and Joanna Haigh of Imperial College London assessed the influence of solar variability and the quasi-biennial oscillation on zonal mean temperatures in the troposphere and lower stratosphere across the globe using satellite reanalysis data. They find a significant influence of the combined variables on temperatures in the lower stratosphere. In the troposphere, the influence of the quasi-biennial oscillation is not apparent, but temperatures are affected by solar variability.
The influence of these two variables does, however, appear at the surface, where they modulate sea-level pressure at high latitudes.