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Robert G. Lamb, Wen H. Chen, and John H. Seinfeld

Abstract

Numerico-empirical expressions for the particle displacement probability density function from which the mean concentration of material in turbulent fluid may be obtained are derived from the numerical planetary boundary layer model of Deardorff. These expressions are then used to compute profiles of the mean, cross-wind-integrated concentration of an inert pollutant issuing from a continuous point source below a stable layer. Profiles are derived for each of two conditions of atmospheric stability: zi/L=0 and –4.5, where zi is the inversion base height and L the Monin-Obukhov length. The resulting concentration profiles [referred to as the numerico-empirical (NE) profiles] are then used in two separate experiments designed to assess the adequacy of conventional atmospheric diffusion formulations.

First, the validity of the atmospheric diffusion equation is assessed by determining for each of the two stabilities cited above the profile of vertical eddy diffusivity that produces the closest fit of the mean concentration predicted by the atmospheric diffusion equation with the NE profiles.

Second, comparisons are made between the NE profiles and the corresponding concentration distributions predicted by the Gaussian plume formula with Pasquill-Gifford dispersion parameters, and the Gaussian puff equation with McElroy-Pooler travel-time-dependent dispersion parameters.

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Katrina S. Virts, John M. Wallace, Michael L. Hutchins, and Robert H. Holzworth
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Peter V. Hobbs, Thomas J. Matejka, Paul H. Herzegh, John D. Locatelli, and Robert A. Houze Jr.

Abstract

Detailed information is deduced on the mesoscale organization of precipitation, the structures of the clouds, the air flows associated with mesoscale rainbands, and the precipitation efficiencies and the mechanisms producing precipitation in the rainbands associated with a cold front. Measurements were obtained with quantitative reflectivity and Doppler radars, two instrumented aircraft, serial rawinsondes and a network of ground stations.

The regions of heaviest precipitation were organized into a complex mesoscale rainband in the warm-sector air ahead of the front, a narrow band of precipitation at the surface cold front, and four wide cold-frontal rainbands. The wide cold-frontal rainbands and the smaller mesoscale areas of precipitation within them moved with the velocities of the winds between ∼3—6 km. The narrow rainband, which was produced by strong convergence and convection in the boundary layer, moved with the speed of the cold front at the surface. A coupled updraft and downdraft was probably responsible for the heavy precipitation on the cold front being organized, on the small mesoscale, into ellipsoidal areas with similar orientations.

The precipitation efficiencies in the warm-sector and narrow cold-frontal rainbands were ∼40–50% and ∼30–50%, respectively. One of the wide cold-frontal rainbands, in which there was a steady production of ice panicles in the main updraft, had a precipitation efficiency of at least 80%, whereas another wide cold-frontal band, in which some precipitation evaporated before reaching the surface, had a precipitation efficiency of ∼20%.

Ice particles from shallow convective cells aloft played important roles in the production of precipitation in the wide cold-frontal rainbands and in some regions of the warm-sector rainband. These “seed” ice particles grew by aggregation and by the deposition of vapor as they fell through lower level “feeder” clouds. About 20% of the mass of the precipitation reaching the ground in the wide cold-frontal rainbands originated in the upper level “seeder” zones and ∼80% in the “feeder” zones.

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Katrina S. Virts, John M. Wallace, Michael L. Hutchins, and Robert H. Holzworth

Abstract

Lightning over the Maritime Continent exhibits a pronounced diurnal cycle. Daytime and evening lightning occurs near coastlines and over mountain slopes, driven by sea and valley breezes. Nocturnal and morning thunderstorms are touched off where land breezes or mountain breezes converge or by gravity waves propagating away from regions of vigorous afternoon convection. In this study, the modulation of the diurnal cycle of lightning and precipitation by 850-hPa winds, cloudiness, and the Madden–Julian oscillation (MJO) is investigated using observations from the World Wide Lightning Location Network (WWLLN) and the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite. The 850-hPa wind speed and area-averaged cloudiness are shown to be negatively correlated with day-to-day lightning frequency over land, and thunderstorm occurrence is suppressed windward of, and enhanced leeward of, mountain ranges. Lightning and environmental conditions are similarly related in the MJO. During break periods, the regular diurnal cycle of lightning is enhanced where ambient low-level winds are easterly but abnormally weak—in the Strait of Malacca, over western and southern Borneo and the adjacent seas, and in the region of nocturnal thunderstorms to the west of Sumatra and Java. When the active, cloudy phase of the MJO, accompanied by low-level westerly winds, passes over the Maritime Continent, the regular diurnal cycle of lightning is enhanced leeward (to the east) of the mountains of Java, Borneo, and the Malay Peninsula. The spatial patterns of lightning and rainfall anomalies are broadly similar, but lightning anomalies tend to be more concentrated near coastlines.

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Katrina S. Virts, John M. Wallace, Michael L. Hutchins, and Robert H. Holzworth

Abstract

Recent observations from the World Wide Lightning Location Network (WWLLN) reveal a pronounced lightning maximum over the warm waters of the Gulf Stream that exhibits distinct diurnal and seasonal variability. Lightning is most frequent during summer (June–August). During afternoon and early evening, lightning is enhanced just onshore of the coast of the southeastern United States because of daytime heating of the land surface and the resulting sea-breeze circulations and convection. Near-surface wind observations from the Quick Scatterometer (QuikSCAT) satellite indicate divergence over the Gulf of Mexico and portions of the Gulf Stream at 1800 LT, at which time lightning activity is suppressed there. Lightning frequency exhibits a broad maximum over the Gulf Stream from evening through noon of the following day, and QuikSCAT wind observations at 0600 LT indicate low-level winds blowing away from the continent and converging over the Gulf Stream. Over the northern Gulf of Mexico, lightning is most frequent from around sunrise through late morning. During winter, lightning exhibits a weak diurnal cycle over the Gulf Stream, with most frequent lightning during the evening.

Precipitation rates from a 3-hourly gridded dataset that incorporates observations from Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM), as well as other satellites, exhibit a diurnal cycle over the Gulf Stream that lags the lightning diurnal cycle by several hours.

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Miao-Ling Lu, Jian Wang, Richard C. Flagan, John H. Seinfeld, Andrew Freedman, Robert A. McClatchey, and Haflidi H. Jonsson

Abstract

Regions of enhanced humidity in the vicinity of cumulus clouds, so-called cloud halos, reflect features of cloud evolution, exert radiative effects, and may serve as a locus for new particle formation. Reported here are the results of an aircraft sampling campaign carried out near Oahu, Hawaii, from 31 July through 10 August 2001, aimed at characterizing the properties of trade wind cumulus cloud halos. An Aerodyne Research, Inc., fast spectroscopic water vapor sensor, flown for the first time in this campaign, allowed characterization of humidity properties at 10-m spatial resolution. Statistical properties of 60 traverses through cloud halos over the campaign were in general agreement with measurements reported by Perry and Hobbs. One particularly long-lived cloud is analyzed in detail, through both airborne measurement and numerical simulation, to track evolution of the cloud halos over the cloud's lifetime. Results of both observation and the simulation show that cloud halos tend to be broad at lower levels and narrow at upper levels, and broader on the downshear side than on the upshear side, broadening with time particularly in the downshear direction. The high correlation of clear-air turbulence distribution with the halo distribution temporally and spatially suggests that the halo forms, in part, due to turbulent mixing at the cloud boundary. Radiative calculations carried out on the simulated cloud and halo field indicate that the halo radiative effect is largest near cloud top during mature and dissipation stages. The halo-enhanced atmospheric shortwave absorption, averaged over this period, is about 1.3% of total solar absorption in the column.

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John M. Wilcox, Philip H. Scherrer, Leif Svalgaard, Walter Orr Roberts, Roger H. Olson, and Roy L. Jenne

Abstract

The solar magnetic sector structure has a sizable and reproducible influence on tropospheric and lower stratospheric vorticity. The average vorticity during winter in the Northern Hemisphere north of 2ON latitude reaches a minimum approximately one day after the passing of a sector boundary, and then increases during the following two or three days. The effect is found at all heights within the troposphere, but is not prominent in the stratosphere, except at the lower levels. No single longitudinal interval appears to dominate the effect.

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Lynn M. Russell, Kevin J. Noone, Ronald J. Ferek, Robert A. Pockalny, Richard C. Flagan, and John H. Seinfeld

Abstract

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) have been sampled in marine stratiform clouds to identify the contribution of anthropogenic combustion emissions in activation of aerosol to cloud droplets. The Monterey Area Ship Track experiment provided an opportunity to acquire data on the role of organic compounds in ambient clouds and in ship tracks identified in satellite images. Identification of PAHs in cloud droplet residual samples indicates that several PAHs are present in cloud condensation nuclei in anthropogenically influenced air and do result in activated droplets in cloud. These results establish the presence of combustion products, such as PAHs, in submicrometer aerosols in anthropogenically influenced marine air, with enhanced concentrations in air polluted by ship effluent. The presence of PAHs in droplet residuals in anthropogenically influenced air masses indicates that some fraction of those combustion products is present in the cloud condensation nuclei that activate in cloud. Although a sufficient mass of droplet residuals was not collected to establish a similar role for organics from measurements in satellite-identified ship tracks, the available evidence from the fraction of organics present in the interstitial aerosol is consistent with part of the organic fraction partitioning to the droplet population. In addition, the probability that a compound will be found in cloud droplets rather than in the unactivated aerosol and the compound’s water solubility are compared. The PAHs studied are only weakly soluble in water, but most of the sparse data collected support more soluble compounds having a higher probability of activation.

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Kevin J. Noone, Elisabeth Öström, Ronald J. Ferek, Tim Garrett, Peter V. Hobbs, Doug W. Johnson, Jonathan P. Taylor, Lynn M. Russell, Richard C. Flagan, John H. Seinfeld, Colin D. O’Dowd, Michael H. Smith, Philip A. Durkee, Kurt Nielsen, James G. Hudson, Robert A. Pockalny, Lieve De Bock, René E. Van Grieken, Richard F. Gasparovic, and Ian Brooks

Abstract

The effects of anthropogenic particulate emissions from ships on the radiative, microphysical, and chemical properties of moderately polluted marine stratiform clouds are examined. A case study of two ships in the same air mass is presented where one of the vessels caused a discernible ship track while the other did not. In situ measurements of cloud droplet size distributions, liquid water content, and cloud radiative properties, as well as aerosol size distributions (outside cloud, interstitial, and cloud droplet residual particles) and aerosol chemistry, are presented. These are related to measurements of cloud radiative properties. The differences between the aerosol in the two ship plumes are discussed;these indicate that combustion-derived particles in the size range of about 0.03–0.3-μm radius were those that caused the microphysical changes in the clouds that were responsible for the ship track.

The authors examine the processes behind ship track formation in a moderately polluted marine boundary layer as an example of the effects that anthropogenic particulate pollution can have in the albedo of marine stratiform clouds.

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Kevin J. Noone, Doug W. Johnson, Jonathan P. Taylor, Ronald J. Ferek, Tim Garrett, Peter V. Hobbs, Philip A. Durkee, Kurt Nielsen, Elisabeth Öström, Colin O’Dowd, Michael H. Smith, Lynn M. Russell, Richard C. Flagan, John H. Seinfeld, Lieve De Bock, René E. Van Grieken, James G. Hudson, Ian Brooks, Richard F. Gasparovic, and Robert A. Pockalny

Abstract

A case study of the effects of ship emissions on the microphysical, radiative, and chemical properties of polluted marine boundary layer clouds is presented. Two ship tracks are discussed in detail. In situ measurements of cloud drop size distributions, liquid water content, and cloud radiative properties, as well as aerosol size distributions (outside-cloud, interstitial, and cloud droplet residual particles) and aerosol chemistry, are presented. These are related to remotely sensed measurements of cloud radiative properties.

The authors examine the processes behind ship track formation in a polluted marine boundary layer as an example of the effects of anthropogenic particulate pollution on the albedo of marine stratiform clouds.

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