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  • Author or Editor: A. Gettelman x
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Mikael K. Witte
,
Hugh Morrison
,
Jørgen B. Jensen
,
Aaron Bansemer
, and
Andrew Gettelman

Abstract

Microphysics parameterizations in large-scale models often account for subgrid variability in the calculation of process rates by integrating over assumed subgrid distributions of the input variables. The variances and covariances that define distribution width may be specified or diagnosed. The correlation ρ of cloud and rain mass mixing ratio/liquid water content (LWC) is a key input for accurate prediction of the accretion rate and a constant value is typically assumed. In this study, high-frequency aircraft measurements with a spatial resolution of ≈22 cm are used to evaluate the scaling behavior of cloud and rain LWC (q c and q r , respectively) and to demonstrate how and why covariability varies with length scale . It is shown that power spectral densities of both q c and q r exhibit scale invariance across a wide range of scales (2.04–142 m for q c ; 33–1.45 × 104 m for q r ). Because the cloud–rain cospectrum is also scale invariant, ρ is therefore expected to vary with . Direct calculation of ρ shows that it generally increases with , but there is significant variability in the ρ relationship that primarily depends on cloud drop number concentration N and cloud cellular organization, suggesting that ρ may also vary with cloud regime. A parameterization of ρ as a function of and N is developed from aircraft observations and implications for diagnosis of ρ from limited-area model output are also discussed.

Full access
Adrian A. Hill
,
Zachary J. Lebo
,
Miroslaw Andrejczuk
,
Sylwester Arabas
,
Piotr Dziekan
,
Paul Field
,
Andrew Gettelman
,
Fabian Hoffmann
,
Hanna Pawlowska
,
Ryo Onishi
, and
Benoit Vié

Abstract

The Kinematic Driver-Aerosol (KiD-A) intercomparison was established to test the hypothesis that detailed warm microphysical schemes provide a benchmark for lower-complexity bulk microphysics schemes. KiD-A is the first intercomparison to compare multiple Lagrangian cloud models (LCMs), size bin-resolved schemes, and double-moment bulk microphysics schemes in a consistent 1D dynamic framework and box cases. In the absence of sedimentation and collision–coalescence, the drop size distributions (DSDs) from the LCMs exhibit similar evolution with expected physical behaviors and good interscheme agreement, with the volume mean diameter (D vol) from the LCMs within 1%–5% of each other. In contrast, the bin schemes exhibit nonphysical broadening with condensational growth. These results further strengthen the case that LCMs are an appropriate numerical benchmark for DSD evolution under condensational growth. When precipitation processes are included, however, the simulated liquid water path, precipitation rates, and response to modified cloud drop/aerosol number concentrations from the LCMs vary substantially, while the bin and bulk schemes are relatively more consistent with each other. The lack of consistency in the LCM results stems from both the collision–coalescence process and the sedimentation process, limiting their application as a numerical benchmark for precipitation processes. Reassuringly, however, precipitation from bulk schemes, which are the basis for cloud microphysics in weather and climate prediction, is within the spread of precipitation from the detailed schemes (LCMs and bin). Overall, this intercomparison identifies the need for focused effort on the comparison of collision–coalescence methods and sedimentation in detailed microphysics schemes, especially LCMs.

Free access
B. H. Kahn
,
J. Teixeira
,
E. J. Fetzer
,
A. Gettelman
,
S. M. Hristova-Veleva
,
X. Huang
,
A. K. Kochanski
,
M. Köhler
,
S. K. Krueger
,
R. Wood
, and
M. Zhao

Abstract

Observations of the scale dependence of height-resolved temperature T and water vapor q variability are valuable for improved subgrid-scale climate model parameterizations and model evaluation. Variance spectral benchmarks for T and q obtained from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) are compared to those generated by state-of-the-art numerical weather prediction “analyses” and “free-running” climate model simulations with spatial resolution comparable to AIRS. The T and q spectra from both types of models are generally too steep, with small-scale variance up to several factors smaller than AIRS. However, the two model analyses more closely resemble AIRS than the two free-running model simulations. Scaling exponents obtained for AIRS column water vapor (CWV) and height-resolved layers of q are also compared to the superparameterized Community Atmospheric Model (SP-CAM), highlighting large differences in the magnitude of CWV variance and the relative flatness of height-resolved q scaling in SP-CAM. Height-resolved q spectra obtained from aircraft observations during the Variability of the American Monsoon Systems Ocean–Cloud–Atmosphere–Land Study Regional Experiment (VOCALS-REx) demonstrate changes in scaling exponents that depend on the observations’ proximity to the base of the subsidence inversion with scale breaks that occur at approximately the dominant cloud scale (~10–30 km). This suggests that finer spatial resolution requirements must be considered for future satellite observations of T and q than those currently planned for infrared and microwave satellite sounders.

Full access
Yi-Hung Kuo
,
J. David Neelin
,
Chih-Chieh Chen
,
Wei-Ting Chen
,
Leo J. Donner
,
Andrew Gettelman
,
Xianan Jiang
,
Kuan-Ting Kuo
,
Eric Maloney
,
Carlos R. Mechoso
,
Yi Ming
,
Kathleen A. Schiro
,
Charles J. Seman
,
Chien-Ming Wu
, and
Ming Zhao

Abstract

To assess deep convective parameterizations in a variety of GCMs and examine the fast-time-scale convective transition, a set of statistics characterizing the pickup of precipitation as a function of column water vapor (CWV), PDFs and joint PDFs of CWV and precipitation, and the dependence of the moisture–precipitation relation on tropospheric temperature is evaluated using the hourly output of two versions of the GFDL Atmospheric Model, version 4 (AM4), NCAR CAM5 and superparameterized CAM (SPCAM). The 6-hourly output from the MJO Task Force (MJOTF)/GEWEX Atmospheric System Study (GASS) project is also analyzed. Contrasting statistics produced from individual models that primarily differ in representations of moist convection suggest that convective transition statistics can substantially distinguish differences in convective representation and its interaction with the large-scale flow, while models that differ only in spatial–temporal resolution, microphysics, or ocean–atmosphere coupling result in similar statistics. Most of the models simulate some version of the observed sharp increase in precipitation as CWV exceeds a critical value, as well as that convective onset occurs at higher CWV but at lower column RH as temperature increases. While some models quantitatively capture these observed features and associated probability distributions, considerable intermodel spread and departures from observations in various aspects of the precipitation–CWV relationship are noted. For instance, in many of the models, the transition from the low-CWV, nonprecipitating regime to the moist regime for CWV around and above critical is less abrupt than in observations. Additionally, some models overproduce drizzle at low CWV, and some require CWV higher than observed for strong precipitation. For many of the models, it is particularly challenging to simulate the probability distributions of CWV at high temperature.

Open access