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Preliminary Tests of Multiscale Modeling with a Two-Dimensional Framework: Sensitivity to Coupling Methods

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  • 1 Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California
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Abstract

Preliminary tests of the multiscale modeling approach, also known as the cloud-resolving convective parameterization, or superparameterization, are performed using an idealized framework. In this approach, a two-dimensional cloud-system resolving model (CSRM) is embedded within each vertical column of a general circulation model (GCM) replacing conventional cloud parameterization. The purpose of this study is to investigate the coupling between the GCM and CSRMs and suggest a revised method of coupling that abandons the cyclic lateral boundary condition for each CSRM used in the original cloud-resolving convective parameterization. In this way, the CSRM extends into neighboring GCM grid boxes while sharing approximately the same mass fluxes with the GCM at the borders of the grid boxes.

With the original and revised methods of coupling, numerical simulations of the evolution of cloud systems are conducted using a two-dimensional model that couples CSRMs with a lower-resolution version of the CSRM with no physics [large-scale dynamics model (LSDM)]. The results with the revised method show that cloud systems can propagate from one LSDM grid column to the next as expected. Comparisons with a straightforward application of a single CSRM to the entire domain (CONTROL) show that the biases of the large-scale thermodynamic fields simulated by the coupled model are significantly smaller with the revised method. The results also show that the biases are near the smallest when the velocity fields of the LSDM and CSRM are nudged to each other with the time scale of a few hours and the thermodynamic field of the LSDM is instantaneously updated at each time step with the domain-averaged CSRM field.

* Current affiliation: Department of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado

Corresponding author address: Dr. Joon-Hee Jung, Department of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80521-9990. Email: jung@atmos.colostate.edu

Abstract

Preliminary tests of the multiscale modeling approach, also known as the cloud-resolving convective parameterization, or superparameterization, are performed using an idealized framework. In this approach, a two-dimensional cloud-system resolving model (CSRM) is embedded within each vertical column of a general circulation model (GCM) replacing conventional cloud parameterization. The purpose of this study is to investigate the coupling between the GCM and CSRMs and suggest a revised method of coupling that abandons the cyclic lateral boundary condition for each CSRM used in the original cloud-resolving convective parameterization. In this way, the CSRM extends into neighboring GCM grid boxes while sharing approximately the same mass fluxes with the GCM at the borders of the grid boxes.

With the original and revised methods of coupling, numerical simulations of the evolution of cloud systems are conducted using a two-dimensional model that couples CSRMs with a lower-resolution version of the CSRM with no physics [large-scale dynamics model (LSDM)]. The results with the revised method show that cloud systems can propagate from one LSDM grid column to the next as expected. Comparisons with a straightforward application of a single CSRM to the entire domain (CONTROL) show that the biases of the large-scale thermodynamic fields simulated by the coupled model are significantly smaller with the revised method. The results also show that the biases are near the smallest when the velocity fields of the LSDM and CSRM are nudged to each other with the time scale of a few hours and the thermodynamic field of the LSDM is instantaneously updated at each time step with the domain-averaged CSRM field.

* Current affiliation: Department of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado

Corresponding author address: Dr. Joon-Hee Jung, Department of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80521-9990. Email: jung@atmos.colostate.edu

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