A Preliminary Intercomparison of the Seasonal Response of Two Atmospheric Climate Models

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  • 1 Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, University of California, Livermore, CA 94550
  • | 2 Climatic Research Institute, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331
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Abstract

In order to better identify and more fully understand the differences in sensitivity among climate models, two quite different models are systematically compared in terms of their seasonal response. The two-dimensional statistical dynamical model (SDM) developed at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and the Oregon State University three-dimensional general circulation model (GCM) were integrated using as closely comparable boundary conditions and forcing as possible. Comparison of the seasonal anomaly (defined as the departure of the monthly zonal average from the zonal annual mean at each latitude) shows that the models agree quite well in terms of the seasonal phase and amplitude of net radiation simulated at the top of the atmosphere, the tropospheric average temperature and surface temperature and the precipitation. The models also resemble the observed seasonal anomalies of these variables to a reasonable degree, although there are significant errors in each formulation.

Abstract

In order to better identify and more fully understand the differences in sensitivity among climate models, two quite different models are systematically compared in terms of their seasonal response. The two-dimensional statistical dynamical model (SDM) developed at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and the Oregon State University three-dimensional general circulation model (GCM) were integrated using as closely comparable boundary conditions and forcing as possible. Comparison of the seasonal anomaly (defined as the departure of the monthly zonal average from the zonal annual mean at each latitude) shows that the models agree quite well in terms of the seasonal phase and amplitude of net radiation simulated at the top of the atmosphere, the tropospheric average temperature and surface temperature and the precipitation. The models also resemble the observed seasonal anomalies of these variables to a reasonable degree, although there are significant errors in each formulation.

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