Role of the Low-Frequency Deformation Field on the Explosive Growth of Extratropical Cyclones at the Jet Exit. Part I: Barotropic Critical Region

G. Rivière Centre National de Recherches Météorologiques, Météo-France, Toulouse, France

Search for other papers by G. Rivière in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
and
A. Joly Centre National de Recherches Météorologiques, Météo-France, Toulouse, France

Search for other papers by A. Joly in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
Restricted access

Abstract

By using new theoretical results on perturbation growth in spatially and temporally complex quasigeostrophic flows, this paper investigates the role of the large-scale deformation field on extratropical cyclones and especially on their explosive growth in the jet-exit region. Theoretical ideas are tested by decomposing the atmospheric flow into a high- and a low-frequency part and by analyzing four-dimensional variational data assimilation (4DVAR) reanalysis data of the Fronts and Atlantic Storm-Track Experiment (FASTEX) during February 1997 as well as reanalysis data for the end of December 1999.

Regions where the low-frequency deformation magnitude is greater than the absolute value of the low-frequency vorticity are shown to correspond to regions where synoptic disturbances at the same level tend to be located. These regions in the upper troposphere are intrinsically related to the horizontal inhomogeneities of the low-frequency large-scale upper-tropospheric jet but cannot be detected by looking separately at the deformation or vorticity. Transitions from one such large-scale region to the next furthermore can be accompanied by a sudden change of the dilatation axes orientation: this combination defines a barotropic critical region (BtCR). Reasons why a BtCR is a specific place where barotropic development is likely to occur are exposed. Two very differently located BtCR regions in two apparently similar zonal-like weather regimes are shown to be the preferred regions where synoptic eddies tend to cross the jet from the south to the north.

BtCRs are also special regions where constructive association between barotropic and baroclinic processes is favored, indeed constrained to cooperate. This is illustrated through the detailed analysis of the last growth stage of Intensive Observation Period 17 (IOP17) of FASTEX. It happens precisely around a BtCR area located in the jet-exit region. Two processes explain this IOP17 development; one involves the barotropic generation rate resulting from the low crossing the BtCR and the other one is baroclinic interaction, which is strongly maintained far away from the baroclinicity maximum because of the new favorable baroclinic configuration resulting from the first process.

Corresponding author address: Dr. G. Rivière, Météo-France, CNRM/GMAP/RECYF, 42 av. G. Coriolis, 31057 Toulouse CEDEX, France. Email: gwendal.riviere@cnrm.meteo.fr

Abstract

By using new theoretical results on perturbation growth in spatially and temporally complex quasigeostrophic flows, this paper investigates the role of the large-scale deformation field on extratropical cyclones and especially on their explosive growth in the jet-exit region. Theoretical ideas are tested by decomposing the atmospheric flow into a high- and a low-frequency part and by analyzing four-dimensional variational data assimilation (4DVAR) reanalysis data of the Fronts and Atlantic Storm-Track Experiment (FASTEX) during February 1997 as well as reanalysis data for the end of December 1999.

Regions where the low-frequency deformation magnitude is greater than the absolute value of the low-frequency vorticity are shown to correspond to regions where synoptic disturbances at the same level tend to be located. These regions in the upper troposphere are intrinsically related to the horizontal inhomogeneities of the low-frequency large-scale upper-tropospheric jet but cannot be detected by looking separately at the deformation or vorticity. Transitions from one such large-scale region to the next furthermore can be accompanied by a sudden change of the dilatation axes orientation: this combination defines a barotropic critical region (BtCR). Reasons why a BtCR is a specific place where barotropic development is likely to occur are exposed. Two very differently located BtCR regions in two apparently similar zonal-like weather regimes are shown to be the preferred regions where synoptic eddies tend to cross the jet from the south to the north.

BtCRs are also special regions where constructive association between barotropic and baroclinic processes is favored, indeed constrained to cooperate. This is illustrated through the detailed analysis of the last growth stage of Intensive Observation Period 17 (IOP17) of FASTEX. It happens precisely around a BtCR area located in the jet-exit region. Two processes explain this IOP17 development; one involves the barotropic generation rate resulting from the low crossing the BtCR and the other one is baroclinic interaction, which is strongly maintained far away from the baroclinicity maximum because of the new favorable baroclinic configuration resulting from the first process.

Corresponding author address: Dr. G. Rivière, Météo-France, CNRM/GMAP/RECYF, 42 av. G. Coriolis, 31057 Toulouse CEDEX, France. Email: gwendal.riviere@cnrm.meteo.fr

Save
  • Arbogast, P., 2004: Frontal wave development by interaction between a front and a cyclone: Application to the FASTEX IOP 17. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 130 , 16751696.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ayrault, F., 1998: Environnement, structure et évolution des dépressions météorologiques: Réalité climatologique et modèles types. Ph.D. thesis, Université P. Sabatier, Toulouse, France, 328 pp.

  • Ayrault, F., and A. Joly, 2000: Une nouvelle typologie des dépressions météorologiques: Classification des phases de maturation. Compt. Rend. Acad. Sci. Paris, Earth Planet Sci, 330 , 167172.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Baehr, C., B. Pouponneau, F. Ayrault, and A. Joly, 1999: Dynamical characterization of the FASTEX cyclogenesis cases. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 125 , 34693494.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Barcilon, A., and C. H. Bishop, 1998: Nonmodal development of baroclinic waves undergoing horizontal shear deformation. J. Atmos. Sci., 55 , 35833597.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bishop, C. H., 1993: On the behavior of baroclinic waves undergoing horizontal deformation. I: The “RT” phase diagram. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 119 , 221240.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bishop, C. H., and A. J. Thorpe, 1994: Frontal wave stability during moist deformation cyclogenesis. II: The suppression of non-linear wave development. J. Atmos. Sci., 51 , 874888.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Black, R. X., and R. M. Dole, 2000: Storm tracks and barotropic deformation in climate models. J. Climate, 13 , 27122728.

  • Cai, M., and M. Mak, 1990: On the basic dynamics of regional cyclogenesis. J. Atmos. Sci., 47 , 14171442.

  • Cammas, J. P., and Coauthors, 1999: FASTEX IOP17 cyclone: Introductory synoptic study with field data. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 125 , 33933414.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Chaboureau, J. P., and A. J. Thorpe, 1999: Frontogenesis and the development of secondary wave cyclones in FASTEX. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 125 , 925940.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Davies, H. C., C. Schar, and H. Wernli, 1991: The palette of fronts and cyclones within a baroclinic wave-development. J. Atmos. Sci., 48 , 16661689.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Desroziers, G., G. Hello, and J-N. Thepaut, 2003: Four-dimensional reanalyses of FASTEX. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 129 , 13011315.

  • Evans, M. S., D. Keyser, L. F. Bosart, and G. M. Lackmann, 1994: A satellite-derived classification scheme for rapid maritime cyclogenesis. Mon. Wea. Rev., 122 , 13811416.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Farrell, B. F., 1989: Transient development in confluent and diffluent flow. J. Atmos. Sci., 46 , 32793288.

  • Hoskins, B. J., and N. V. West, 1979: Baroclinic waves and frontogenesis. Part II: Uniform potential vorticity jet flows—Cold and warm fronts. J. Atmos. Sci., 36 , 16631680.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • James, I. N., 1987: Suppression of baroclinic instability in horizontally sheared flows. J. Atmos. Sci., 44 , 37103720.

  • Joly, A., and Coauthors, 1999: Overview of the field phase of the Fronts and Atlantic Storm-Track Experiment (FASTEX) project. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 125 , 31313163.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Koh, T-Y., and B. Legras, 2002: Hyperbolic lines and the stratospheric polar vortex. Chaos, 12 , 382394.

  • Kucharski, F., and A. J. Thorpe, 2000: Upper-level barotropic growth as a precursor to cyclogenesis during FASTEX. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 126 , 32193232.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lackmann, G. M., D. Keyser, and L. F. Bosart, 1999: Energetics of an intensifying jet streak during the experiment on rapidly intensifying cyclones over the Atlantic (ERICA). Mon. Wea. Rev., 127 , 27772795.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lapeyre, G., P. Klein, and B. L. Hua, 1999: Does the tracer gradient vector align with the strain eigenvectors in 2D turbulence. Phys. Fluids A, 11 , 37293737.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lau, N-C., 1988: Variability of the observed midlatitude storm tracks in relation to low-frequency changes in the circulation pattern. J. Atmos. Sci., 45 , 27182743.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lee, W-J., and M. Mak, 1996: The role of orography in the dynamics of storm tracks. J. Atmos. Sci., 53 , 17371750.

  • Mak, M., and M. Cai, 1989: Local barotropic instability. J. Atmos. Sci., 46 , 32893311.

  • Mallet, I., P. Arbogast, C. Baehr, J. P. Cammas, and P. Mascart, 1999a: Effects of a low-level precursor and frontal stability on cyclogenesis during FASTEX IOP17. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 125 , 34153437.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Mallet, I., J. P. Cammas, P. Mascart, and P. Bechtold, 1999b: Effects of cloud diabatic heating on the early development of the FASTEX IOP17 cyclone. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 125 , 34393467.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Orlanski, I., and J. Katzfey, 1991: The life cycle of a cyclone wave in the Southern Hemisphere. Part I: Eddy energy budget. J. Atmos. Sci., 48 , 19721998.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Orlanski, I., and J. P. Sheldon, 1995: Stages in the energetics of baroclinic systems. Tellus, 47A , 605628.

  • Pierrehumbert, R. T., 1984: Local and global instability of zonally varying flow. J. Atmos. Sci., 41 , 21412162.

  • Rivière, G., and A. Joly, 2006: Role of the low-frequency deformation field on the explosive growth of extratropical cyclones at the jet exit. Part II: Baroclinic critical region. J. Atmos. Sci., 63 , 19821995.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Rivière, G., B. L. Hua, and P. Klein, 2003: Perturbation growth in terms of barotropic alignment properties. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 129 , 26132635.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Rivière, G., B. L. Hua, and P. Klein, 2004: Perturbation growth in terms of baroclinic alignment properties. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 130 , 16551673.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sanders, F., 1993: Upper-level geostrophic diffluence and deepening of surface lows. Wea. Forecasting, 8 , 339344.

  • Santurette, P., and A. Joly, 2002: ANASYG/PRESYG, Météo-France’s new graphical summary of the synoptic situation. Meteor. Appl., 9 , 129154.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Schultz, D. M., D. Keyser, and L. F. Bosart, 1998: The effect of large-scale flow on low-level frontal structure and evolution in midlatitudes cyclones. Mon. Wea. Rev., 126 , 17671791.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Shutts, G. J., 1983: The propagation of eddies in diffluent jet streams: Eddy vorticity forcing of “blocking” flow fields. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 109 , 737761.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sickmoller, M., R. Blender, and K. Fraedrich, 2000: Observed winter cyclone tracks in the Northern Hemisphere in re-analysed ECMWF data. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 126 , 591620.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Simmons, A. J., and B. J. Hoskins, 1980: Barotropic influences on the growth and decay of baroclinic waves. J. Atmos. Sci., 37 , 16791684.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Thorncroft, C. D., B. J. Hoskins, and M. E. McIntyre, 1993: Two paradigms of baroclinic-wave life-cycle behavior. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 119 , 1755.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Uccellini, L. W., 1990: Processes contributing to the rapid development of extratropical cyclones. Extratropical Cyclones: The Erik Palmen Memorial Volume, C. Newton and E. O. Holopainen, Eds., Amer. Meteor. Soc., 81–105.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Vautard, R., 1990: Multiple weather regimes over the North Atlantic: Analysis of precursors and successors. Mon. Wea. Rev., 118 , 20562081.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Whitaker, J. S., and A. Barcilon, 1992: Type B cyclogenesis in a zonally varying flow. J. Atmos. Sci., 49 , 18771892.

  • Young, M. V., 1995: Types of cyclogenesis. Images in Weather Forecasting, M. J. Bader et al., Eds., Cambridge University Press, 213–286.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 188 56 7
PDF Downloads 140 45 6