Multiscale Upstream and In Situ Precursors to the Elevated Mixed Layer and High-Impact Weather over the Midwest United States

Jason M. Cordeira Department of Atmospheric Science and Chemistry, Plymouth State University, Plymouth, New Hampshire

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Nicholas D. Metz Department of Geoscience, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva, New York

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Macy E. Howarth Department of Geoscience, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva, New York

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Thomas J. Galarneau Jr. Department of Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences, The University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona

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Abstract

Two severe MCSs over the upper Midwest United States resulted in >100 mm of rain in a ~24-h period and >200 severe weather reports, respectively, during 30 June–2 July 2011. This period also featured 100 (104) daily maximum high (low) temperature records across the same region. These high-impact weather events occurred in the presence of an elevated mixed layer (EML) that influenced the development of the severe MCSs and the numerous record high temperatures. The antecedent large-scale flow evolution was influenced by early season Tropical Cyclone Meari over the western North Pacific. The recurvature and subsequent interaction of Meari with the extratropical large-scale flow occurred in conjunction with Rossby wave train amplification over the North Pacific and dispersion across North America during 22 June–2 July 2011. The Rossby wave train dispersion contributed to trough (ridge) development over western (central) North America and the development of an EML and the two MCSs over the upper Midwest United States. A composite analysis of 99 warm-season days with an EML at Minneapolis, Minnesota, suggests that Rossby wave train amplification and dispersion across the North Pacific may frequently occur in the 7 days leading up to EMLs across the upper Midwest. The composite analysis also demonstrates an increased frequency of severe weather and elevated temperatures relative to climatology on days with an EML. These results suggest that EMLs over the upper Midwest may often be preceded by Rossby wave train amplification over the North Pacific and be followed by a period of severe weather and elevated temperatures.

© 2017 American Meteorological Society. For information regarding reuse of this content and general copyright information, consult the AMS Copyright Policy (www.ametsoc.org/PUBSReuseLicenses).

Corresponding author e-mail: Jason M. Cordeira, j_cordeira@plymouth.edu

Abstract

Two severe MCSs over the upper Midwest United States resulted in >100 mm of rain in a ~24-h period and >200 severe weather reports, respectively, during 30 June–2 July 2011. This period also featured 100 (104) daily maximum high (low) temperature records across the same region. These high-impact weather events occurred in the presence of an elevated mixed layer (EML) that influenced the development of the severe MCSs and the numerous record high temperatures. The antecedent large-scale flow evolution was influenced by early season Tropical Cyclone Meari over the western North Pacific. The recurvature and subsequent interaction of Meari with the extratropical large-scale flow occurred in conjunction with Rossby wave train amplification over the North Pacific and dispersion across North America during 22 June–2 July 2011. The Rossby wave train dispersion contributed to trough (ridge) development over western (central) North America and the development of an EML and the two MCSs over the upper Midwest United States. A composite analysis of 99 warm-season days with an EML at Minneapolis, Minnesota, suggests that Rossby wave train amplification and dispersion across the North Pacific may frequently occur in the 7 days leading up to EMLs across the upper Midwest. The composite analysis also demonstrates an increased frequency of severe weather and elevated temperatures relative to climatology on days with an EML. These results suggest that EMLs over the upper Midwest may often be preceded by Rossby wave train amplification over the North Pacific and be followed by a period of severe weather and elevated temperatures.

© 2017 American Meteorological Society. For information regarding reuse of this content and general copyright information, consult the AMS Copyright Policy (www.ametsoc.org/PUBSReuseLicenses).

Corresponding author e-mail: Jason M. Cordeira, j_cordeira@plymouth.edu
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