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Naumann A.K.,Max Planck Institute for MeteorologyHamburg Germany | Seifert A.,Hans Ertel Center for Weather Research
Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems | Year: 2016

This study investigates growth processes of raindrops and the role of recirculation of raindrops for the formation of precipitation in shallow cumulus. Two related cases of fields of lightly precipitating shallow cumulus are simulated using Large-Eddy Simulation combined with a Lagrangian drop model for raindrop growth and a cloud tracking algorithm. Statistics from the Lagrangian drop model yield that most raindrops leave the cloud laterally and then evaporate in the subsaturated cloud environmental air. Only 1%-3% of the raindrops contribute to surface precipitation. Among this subsample of raindrops that contribute to surface precipitation, two growth regimes are identified: those raindrops that are dominated by accretional growth from cloud water, and those raindrops that are dominated by selfcollection among raindrops. The mean cloud properties alone are not decisive for the growth of an individual raindrop but the in-cloud variability is crucial. Recirculation of raindrops is found to be common in shallow cumulus, especially for those raindrops that contribute to surface precipitation. The fraction of surface precipitation that is attributed to recirculating raindrops differs from cloud to cloud but can be larger than 50%. This implies that simple conceptual models of raindrop growth that neglect the effect of recirculation disregard a substantial portion of raindrop growth in shallow cumulus. © 2016. The Authors.

Pithan F.,Max Planck Institute for MeteorologyHamburg Germany | Angevine W.,National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration | Mauritsen T.,Max Planck Institute for MeteorologyHamburg Germany
Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems | Year: 2015

Model intercomparisons have identified important deficits in the representation of the stable boundary layer by turbulence parametrizations used in current weather and climate models. However, detrimental impacts of more realistic schemes on the large-scale flow have hindered progress in this area. Here we implement a total turbulent energy scheme into the climate model ECHAM6. The total turbulent energy scheme considers the effects of Earth's rotation and static stability on the turbulence length scale. In contrast to the previously used turbulence scheme, the TTE scheme also implicitly represents entrainment flux in a dry convective boundary layer. Reducing the previously exaggerated surface drag in stable boundary layers indeed causes an increase in southern hemispheric zonal winds and large-scale pressure gradients beyond observed values. These biases can be largely removed by increasing the parametrized orographic drag. Reducing the neutral limit turbulent Prandtl number warms and moistens low-latitude boundary layers and acts to reduce longstanding radiation biases in the stratocumulus regions, the Southern Ocean and the equatorial cold tongue that are common to many climate models. © 2015. The Authors.

Sein D.V.,Alfred Wegener InstituteBremerhaven Germany | Mikolajewicz U.,Max Planck Institute for MeteorologyHamburg Germany | Groger M.,Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute | Fast I.,German Climate Computing CenterHamburg Germany | And 4 more authors.
Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems | Year: 2015

The general circulation models used to simulate global climate typically feature resolution too coarse to reproduce many smaller-scale processes, which are crucial to determining the regional responses to climate change. A novel approach to downscale climate change scenarios is presented which includes the interactions between the North Atlantic Ocean and the European shelves as well as their impact on the North Atlantic and European climate. The goal of this paper is to introduce the global ocean-regional atmosphere coupling concept and to show the potential benefits of this model system to simulate present-day climate. A global ocean-sea ice-marine biogeochemistry model (MPIOM/HAMOCC) with regionally high horizontal resolution is coupled to an atmospheric regional model (REMO) and global terrestrial hydrology model (HD) via the OASIS coupler. Moreover, results obtained with ROM using NCEP/NCAR reanalysis and ECHAM5/MPIOM CMIP3 historical simulations as boundary conditions are presented and discussed for the North Atlantic and North European region. The validation of all the model components, i.e., ocean, atmosphere, terrestrial hydrology, and ocean biogeochemistry is performed and discussed. The careful and detailed validation of ROM provides evidence that the proposed model system improves the simulation of many aspects of the regional climate, remarkably the ocean, even though some biases persist in other model components, thus leaving potential for future improvement. We conclude that ROM is a powerful tool to estimate possible impacts of climate change on the regional scale. © 2015. The Authors.

Becker T.,Max Planck Institute for MeteorologyHamburg Germany | Stevens B.,Max Planck Institute for MeteorologyHamburg Germany
Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems | Year: 2014

The comprehensive general circulation model ECHAM6 is used in a radiative-convective equilibrium configuration. It is coupled to a perfectly conducting slab. To understand the local impact of thermodynamic surface properties on the land-ocean warming contrast, the surface latent heat flux and surface heat capacity are reduced stepwise, aiming for a land-like climate. Both ocean-like and land-like RCE simulation reproduce the tropical atmosphere over ocean and land in a satisfactory manner and lead to reasonable land-ocean warming ratios. A small surface heat capacity induces a high diurnal surface temperature range which triggers precipitation during the day and decouples the free troposphere from the diurnal mean temperature. With increasing evaporation resistance, the net atmospheric cooling rate decreases because cloud base height rises, causing a reduction of precipitation. Climate sensitivity depends more on changes in evaporation resistance than on changes in surface heat capacity. A feedback analysis with the partial radiation perturbation method shows that amplified warming over idealized land can be associated with disproportional changes in the lapse rate versus the water vapor feedback. Cloud feedbacks, convective aggregation, and changes in global mean surface temperature confuse the picture. © 2014. The Authors.

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