Browse

Shuaibing Shao
,
Xin-Min Zeng
,
Ning Wang
,
Irfan Ullah
, and
Haishen Lv

Abstract

Currently, there is a lack of investigating moisture sources for precipitation over the upstream catchment of the Three Gorges Dam (UCTGD), the world’s largest dam. Using the dynamical recycling model (DRM), trajectory frequency method (TFM), and the Climate Forecast System Reanalysis (CFSR), this study quantifies moisture sources and transport paths for UCTGD summer precipitation from 1980 to 2009 based on two categories of sources: region-specific and source-direction. Overall, the land and oceanic sources contribute roughly 63% and 37%, respectively, of the moisture to UCTGD summer precipitation. UCTGD and the Indian Ocean are the most important land and oceanic sources, respectively, in which the southern Indian Ocean with over 10% of moisture contribution was overlooked previously. Under the influence of the Asian monsoon and prevailing westerlies, the land contribution decreases to 57.3% in June, then gradually increases to 68.8%. It is found that for drought years with enhanced southwest monsoon, there is a weakening of the moisture contribution from the C-shaped belt along the Arabian Sea, South Asia, and UCTGD, and vice versa. TFM results show three main moisture transport paths and highlight the importance of moisture from the southwest. Comparison analysis indicates that, generally, sink regions are more affected by land evaporation with their locations more interior to the center of the mainland. Furthermore, correlations between moisture contributions and indices of general circulation and sea surface temperature are investigated, suggesting that these indices affect precipitation by influencing moisture contributions of the subregions. All of these are useful for comprehending the causes of summer UCTGD precipitation.

Significance Statement

Quantitative research on the moisture sources of summer precipitation has been implemented for the upstream catchment of the Three Gorges Dam (UCTGD), which is of particular hydrological significance but has not been investigated previously. The dynamical recycling model (DRM)–trajectory frequency method (TFM) approach is used to quantify and interpret the results of the moisture sources both in different specific subregions and directions, which produce more meaningful results than a single method for the areal division of moisture sources. Furthermore, antecedent indices that significantly influence the following moisture contributions of the subregions and then summer UCTGD precipitation are studied in terms of large-scale general circulation indices, which would help our understanding of precipitation forecast for UCTGD.

Restricted access
Cyrille Flamant
,
Jean-Pierre Chaboureau
,
Julien Delanoë
,
Marco Gaetani
,
Cédric Jamet
,
Christophe Lavaysse
,
Olivier Bock
,
Maurus Borne
,
Quitterie Cazenave
,
Pierre Coutris
,
Juan Cuesta
,
Laurent Menut
,
Clémantyne Aubry
,
Angela Benedetti
,
Pierre Bosser
,
Sophie Bounissou
,
Christophe Caudoux
,
Hélène Collomb
,
Thomas Donal
,
Guy Febvre
,
Thorsten Fehr
,
Andreas H. Fink
,
Paola Formenti
,
Nicolau Gomes Araujo
,
Peter Knippertz
,
Eric Lecuyer
,
Mateus Neves Andrade
,
Cédric Gacial Ngoungué Langué
,
Tanguy Jonville
,
Alfons Schwarzenboeck
, and
Azusa Takeishi

Abstract

During the boreal summer, mesoscale convective systems generated over West Africa propagate westward and interact with African easterly waves, and dust plumes transported from the Sahel and Sahara by the African easterly jet. Once off West Africa, the vortices in the wake of these mesoscale convective systems evolve in a complex environment sometimes leading to the development of tropical storms and hurricanes, especially in September when sea surface temperatures are high. Numerical weather predictions of cyclogenesis downstream of West Africa remains a key challenge due to the incomplete understanding of the clouds–atmospheric dynamics–dust interactions that limit predictability. The primary objective of the Clouds–Atmospheric Dynamics–Dust Interactions in West Africa (CADDIWA) project is to improve our understanding of the relative contributions of the direct, semidirect, and indirect radiative effects of dust on the dynamics of tropical waves as well as the intensification of vortices in the wake of offshore mesoscale convective systems and their evolution into tropical storms over the North Atlantic. Airborne observations relevant to the assessment of such interactions (active remote sensing, in situ microphysics probes, among others) were made from 8 to 21 September 2021 in the tropical environment of Sal Island, Cape Verde. The environments of several tropical cyclones, including Tropical Storm Rose, were monitored and probed. The airborne measurements also serve the purpose of regional model evaluation and the validation of spaceborne wind, aerosol and cloud products pertaining to satellite missions of the European Space Agency and EUMETSAT (including the Aeolus, EarthCARE, and IASI missions).

Open access
Marcin Paszkuta
,
Maciej Markowski
, and
Adam Krężel

Abstract

Empirical verification of the reliability of estimating the amount of solar radiation entering the sea surface is a challenging topic due to the quantity and quality of data. The collected measurements of total and diffuse radiation from the Multifilter Rotating Shadowband Radiometer (MRF-7) commercial device over the Baltic Sea were compared with the satellite results of using modeling data. The obtained results, also divided into individual spectral bands, were analyzed for usefulness in satellite cloud and aerosol detection. The article presents a new approach to assessing radiation and cloud cover based on the use of models supported by satellite data. Measurement uncertainties were estimated for the obtained results. To reduce uncertainty, the results were averaged to the time constant of the device, day, and month. The effectiveness of the method was determined by comparison against the SM Hel measurement point. The empirical results obtained confirm the effectiveness of using satellite methods for estimating radiation along with cloud-cover detection over the sea with the adopted uncertainty values.

Significance Statement

The difference in the amount of solar energy reaching the sea surface between cloudless and cloudy areas reaches tens of percent. Empirical results confirm the effectiveness of using satellite methods to estimate solar radiation along with cloud-cover detection. Over the sea in comparison to land, the amount of empirical data is limited. This research uses new empirical results of radiation to determine the accuracy of satellite estimation results. Experimental results show that the proposed method is effective and adequately parameterizes the detection of satellite image features.

Open access
Aman Gupta
,
Robert Reichert
,
Andreas Dörnbrack
,
Hella Garny
,
Roland Eichinger
,
Inna Polichtchouk
,
Bernd Kaifler
, and
Thomas Birner

Abstract

Gravity waves (GWs) are among the key drivers of the meridional overturning circulation in the mesosphere and upper stratosphere. Their representation in climate models suffers from insufficient resolution and limited observational constraints on their parameterizations. This obscures assessments of middle atmospheric circulation changes in a changing climate. This study presents a comprehensive analysis of stratospheric GW activity above and downstream of the Andes from 1 to 15 August 2019, with special focus on GW representation ranging from an unprecedented kilometer-scale global forecast model (1.4 km ECMWF IFS), ground-based Rayleigh lidar (CORAL) observations, modern reanalysis (ERA5), to a coarse-resolution climate model (EMAC). Resolved vertical flux of zonal GW momentum (GWMF) is found to be stronger by a factor of at least 2–2.5 in IFS compared to ERA5. Compared to resolved GWMF in IFS, parameterizations in ERA5 and EMAC continue to inaccurately generate excessive GWMF poleward of 60°S, yielding prominent differences between resolved and parameterized GWMFs. A like-to-like validation of GW profiles in IFS and ERA5 reveals similar wave structures. Still, even at ∼1 km resolution, the resolved waves in IFS are weaker than those observed by lidar. Further, GWMF estimates across datasets reveal that temperature-based proxies, based on midfrequency approximations for linear GWs, overestimate GWMF due to simplifications and uncertainties in GW wavelength estimation from data. Overall, the analysis provides GWMF benchmarks for parameterization validation and calls for three-dimensional GW parameterizations, better upper-boundary treatment, and vertical resolution increases commensurate with increases in horizontal resolution in models, for a more realistic GW analysis.

Significance Statement

Gravity wave–induced momentum forcing forms a key component of the middle atmospheric circulation. However, complete knowledge of gravity waves, their atmospheric effects, and their long-term trends are obscured due to limited global observations, and the inability of current climate models to fully resolve them. This study combines a kilometer-scale forecast model, modern reanalysis, and a coarse-resolution climate model to first compare the resolved and parameterized momentum fluxes by gravity waves generated over the Andes, and then evaluate the fluxes using a state-of-the-art ground-based Rayleigh lidar. Our analysis reveals shortcomings in current model parameterizations of gravity waves in the middle atmosphere and highlights the sensitivity of the estimated flux to the formulation used.

Restricted access
Larry W. O’Neill
,
Dudley B. Chelton
,
Ernesto Rodríguez
,
Roger Samelson
, and
Alexander Wineteer

Abstract

We propose a method to reconstruct sea surface height anomalies (SSHA) from vector surface currents and winds. This analysis is motivated by the proposed satellite ODYSEA, which is a Doppler scatterometer that measures coincident surface vector winds and currents. If it is feasible to estimate SSHA from these measurements, thenODYSEA could provide collocated fields of SSHA, currents, and winds over a projected wide swath of ∼1700 km. The reconstruction also yields estimates of the low-frequency surface geostrophic, Ekman, irrotational and non-divergent current components and a framework for separation of balanced and unbalanced motions. The reconstruction is based on a steady-state surface momentum budget including the Ekman drift, Coriolis acceleration, and horizontal advection. The horizontal SSHA gradient is obtained as a residual of these terms, and the unknown SSHA is solved for using a Helmholtz-Hodge Decomposition given an imposed SSHA boundary condition. We develop the reconstruction using surface currents, winds, and SSHA off the U.S. west coast from a 43-day coupled ROMS/WRF simulation. We also consider how simulated ODYSEA measurement and sampling errors and boundary condition uncertainties impact reconstruction accuracy. We find that temporal smoothing of the currents for periods of 150 hours is necessary to mitigate large reconstruction errors associated with unbalanced near-inertial motions. For the most realistic case of projected ODYSEA measurement noise and temporal sampling, the reconstructed SSHA fields have an RMS error of 2.1 cm and a model skill (squared correlation) of 0.958 with 150-hour resolution. We conclude that an accurate SSHA reconstruction is feasible using information measured by ODYSEA and external SSHA boundary conditions.

Restricted access
Scott D. Miller
,
Marc Emond
,
Doug Vandemark
,
Shawn Shellito
,
Jason Covert
,
Ivan Bogoev
, and
Edward Swiatek

Abstract

Eddy covariance (EC) air-sea CO2 flux measurements have been developed for large research vessels, but have yet to be demonstrated for smaller platforms. Our goal was to design and build a complete EC CO2 flux package suitable for unattended operation on a buoy. Published state-of-the-art techniques that have proven effective on research vessels, such as air stream drying and liquid water rejection, were adapted for a 2-m discus buoy with limited power. Fast-response atmospheric CO2 concentration was measured using both an off-the-shelf (“stock”) gas analyzer (EC155, Campbell Scientific, Inc.) and a prototype gas analyzer (“proto”) with reduced motion-induced error that was designed and built in collaboration with an instrument manufacturer. The system was tested on the University of New Hampshire (UNH) air-sea interaction buoy for 18 days in the Gulf of Maine in October 2020. The data demonstrate the overall robustness of the system. Empirical post-processing techniques previously used on ship-based measurements to address motion sensitivity of CO2 analyzers were generally not effective for the stock sensor. The proto analyzer markedly outperformed the stock unit and did not require ad hoc motion corrections, yet revealed some remaining artifacts to be addressed in future designs. Additional system refinements to further reduce power demands and increase unattended deployment duration are described.

Restricted access
Enrico Chinchella
,
Arianna Cauteruccio
, and
Luca G. Lanza

Abstract

The measurement accuracy of an electroacoustic precipitation sensor, the Vaisala WXT520, is investigated to quantify the associated wind-induced bias. The device is widely used as a noncatching tool for measuring the integral features of liquid precipitation, specifically rainfall amount and intensity. A numerical simulation using computational fluid dynamics is used to determine the bluff-body behavior of the instrument when exposed to wind. The obtained airflow velocity patterns near the sensor are initially validated in a wind tunnel. Then, the wind-induced deviation and acceleration/deceleration of individual raindrop trajectories and the resulting impact on the measured precipitation are replicated using a Lagrangian particle tracking model. The sensor’s specific measurement principle necessitates redefining catch ratios and the collection efficiency in terms of the resulting kinetic energy and quantifying them as a function of particle Reynolds number and precipitation intensity, respectively. Wind speed and direction and drop size distribution have been simulated across various combinations. The results show that the measured precipitation is overestimated by up to 400% under the influence of wind. The presented adjustment curves can be used to correct raw rainfall measurements taken by the Vaisala WXT520 in windy conditions, either in real time or as a postprocessing function. The magnitude of the adjustment at any operational aggregation level largely depends on the local rainfall and wind regimes at the site of measurement and may have a strong impact on applications in regions where wind is frequent during low- to medium-intensity precipitation.

Restricted access
Lian Liu
and
Yaoming Ma

Abstract

The snow albedo is a vital component of land–atmosphere coupling models. It plays a critical role in regulating land surface energy exchange by controlling incoming solar radiation absorbed by the land surface and influencing the timing and rate of snowmelt. Accurate snow albedo simulation is essential to obtain surface energy balance and snow-cover estimates. Here, the simulation of albedo and snow cover using the Weather Research and Forecasting Model and an improved snow albedo scheme is verified against satellite-retrieved products during and immediately following eight snowfall events over the Tibetan Plateau. The improved model successfully characterizes the spatial pattern and inverted U-shaped temporal pattern of albedo over the entire Tibetan Plateau. This is attributed to the local optimization of snow-age parameters and explicit consideration of snow depth in the improved scheme. Compared with the previous model, the model proposed herein greatly decreases the overestimated albedo (by 0.13–0.27), yielding a bias range of ±0.08, mean relative bias decrease of 70%, and significant increase in the spatial correlation coefficient of 0.03–0.39 (mean: 0.13). The significant improvements of albedo estimates appear in deep snow-covered regions, largely attributed to parameter optimization related to snow albedo decay, while less improvements appear over the shallow snow-covered regions. Accurate reproduction of the spatiotemporal variation in albedo alleviated snow-cover overestimation by small amounts. For snow-cover estimates, the improved model consistently decreases the false-alarm rate by 0.03, and increases the overall accuracy and equitable threat score by 0.04 and 0.03, respectively. Moreover, the improved scheme shows an equivalent improvement of albedo estimates at both 1- and 5-km grid spacing over the eastern Tibetan Plateau; this is also true for snow-cover estimates.

Significance Statement

Snow albedo schemes in widely used numerical weather prediction models show notable shortcomings in complex mountainous regions, hindering accurate surface energy balance and snow-cover prediction. The purpose of this study is to better understand the role of snow albedo on snow-cover estimates and reveal the application potential of an improved snow albedo scheme across the Tibetan Plateau. This is important because snow albedo influences the timing and rate of snowmelt, and in turn snow-cover estimates, through regulating the surface energy budget. Our results highlight the strong application potential of our improved scheme in reducing snow simulation errors, confirm the importance of snow depth on snow albedo, and provide a new perspective for improving the accuracy of snow forecast over the topographically high Tibetan Plateau.

Restricted access
Hiroyuki Kusaka
,
Yuma Imai
,
Hiroki Kobayashi
,
Quang-Van Doan
, and
Thanh Ngo-Duc

Abstract

North-Central Vietnam often experiences high temperatures. Foehn winds originating from the Truong Son Mountains (also known as Laos winds) are believed to contribute to abnormally high temperatures; however, no quantitative research has focused on foehn warming in Vietnam. In this study, we conducted numerical simulations using the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model to investigate the contribution of foehn warming to abnormally high temperatures in north-central Vietnam in early June 2017. Generally, May–June is the monsoon period in Vietnam. Consequently, foehn warming during this season is thought to be mainly caused by latent heating and precipitation mechanism. However, the primary factor in the cases covered in this study was foehn warming with an isentropic drawdown mechanism. Diabatic heating with turbulent diffusion and sensible heat flux from mountain slopes also play significant roles. The warming effect of the foehn winds on the temperatures during the events was approximately 2–3°C. It was concluded that the high temperature events from May 31-June 5, 2017 were caused by synoptic-scale warm advection and foehn warming. Sensitivity experiments were conducted on the WRF model, utilizing three atmospheric boundary layer turbulence schemes (YSU, ACM2, and MYNN), consistently yielding results for simulated temperature and relative humidity. The wind speed bias for the MYNN scheme was found to be lower than that of the other schemes. However, this study did not delve into the underlying reasons for these differences. The optimal performance of each scheme remains an open question.

Restricted access
Shengjun Liu
,
Wenjie Yan
,
Xinru Liu
,
Yamin Hu
, and
Dangfu Yang

Abstract

The research and application of convolutional neural networks (CNNs) on statistical downscaling have been hampered by the fact that deep learning is highly dependent on sample size and is considered to be a black-box model. Therefore, a CNN model with transfer learning (CNN-TL) is proposed to study the pre-rainy season precipitation of South China. First, an augmented monthly dataset is created by sliding a fixed-length window over the daily circulation field and precipitation data for the entire year. Next, a base CNN network is pretrained on the augmented dataset, and then the network parameters are tuned on the actual monthly dataset from South China. Then, guided backpropagation is conducted to obtain the distribution regions of the key features and explain the net. The coefficient of determination R 2 and root-mean-square error (RMSE) show that the CNN-TL model has higher explanatory power and better fitting performance than the feature extraction–based random forest. In comparison with the base CNN, the transfer learning approach can improve the explanatory power of the model by 10.29% and reduce the average RMSE by 6.82%. In addition, the interpretation results of the model show that the critical regions are primarily South China and its surrounding areas, including the Indochina Peninsula, the Bay of Bengal, and the South China Sea. Furthermore, the ablation experiments and composite analysis illustrate that these regions are very important.

Significance Statement

To mitigate the challenges posed by small sample sizes and the transparency of deep learning in downscaling problems, we propose a convolutional neural network based on sample augmentation and transfer learning to study the monthly precipitation downscaling problem during the preflood period in South China. In comparison with random forests and conventional convolutional neural networks, our model achieves an optimal interpretation rate and stability. In addition, we explore the interpretability of the model using guided backpropagation to find the distribution of key features within the large-scale circulation field, thus increasing the credibility of the model.

Restricted access