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Oliver Schlenczek
,
Jacob P. Fugal
,
Gary Lloyd
,
Keith N. Bower
,
Thomas W. Choularton
,
Michael Flynn
,
Jonathan Crosier
, and
Stephan Borrmann

Abstract

During the Cloud and Aerosol Characterization Experiment (CLACE) 2013 field campaign at the High Altitude Research Station Jungfraujoch, Switzerland, optically thin pure ice clouds and ice crystal precipitation were measured using holographic and other in situ particle instruments. For cloud particles, particle images, positions in space, concentrations, and size distributions were obtained, allowing one to extract size distributions classified by ice crystal habit. Small ice crystals occurring under conditions with a vertically thin cloud layer above and a stratocumulus layer approximately 1 km below exhibit similar properties in size and crystal habits as Antarctic/Arctic diamond dust. Also, ice crystal precipitation stemming from midlevel clouds subsequent to the diamond dust event was observed with a larger fraction of ice crystal aggregates when compared with the diamond dust. In another event, particle size distributions could be derived from mostly irregular ice crystals and aggregates, which likely originated from surface processes. These particles show a high spatial and temporal variability, and it is noted that size and habit distributions have only a weak dependence on the particle number concentration. Larger ice crystal aggregates and rosette shapes of some hundred microns in maximum dimension could be sampled as a precipitating cirrostratus cloud passed the site. The individual size distributions for each habit agree well with lognormal distributions. Fitted parameters to the size distributions are presented along with the area-derived ice water content, and the size distributions are compared with other measurements of pure ice clouds made in the Arctic and Antarctic.

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Peter T. May
,
James H. Mather
,
Geraint Vaughan
,
Keith N. Bower
,
Christian Jakob
,
Greg M. McFarquhar
, and
Gerald G. Mace
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Peter T. May
,
James H. Mather
,
Geraint Vaughan
,
Christian Jakob
,
Greg M. McFarquhar
,
Keith N. Bower
, and
Gerald G. Mace

A comprehensive dataset describing tropical cloud systems and their environmental setting and impacts has been collected during the Tropical Warm Pool International Cloud Experiment (TWPICE) and Aerosol and Chemical Transport in Tropical Convection (ACTIVE) campaign in the area around Darwin, Northern Australia, in January and February 2006. The aim of the experiment was to observe the evolution of tropical cloud systems and their interaction with the environment within an observational framework optimized for a range of modeling activities with the goal of improving the representation of cloud and aerosol process in a range of models. The experiment design utilized permanent observational facilities in Darwin, including a polarimetric weather radar and a suite of cloud remote-sensing instruments. This was augmented by a dense network of soundings, together with radiation, flux, lightning, and remote-sensing measurements, as well as oceanographic observations. A fleet of five research aircraft, including two high-altitude aircraft, were taking measurements of fluxes, cloud microphysics, and chemistry; cloud radar and lidar were carried on a third aircraft. Highlights of the experiment include an intense mesoscale convective system (MCS) developed within the network, observations used to analyze the impacts of aerosol on convective systems, and observations used to relate cirrus properties to the parent storm properties.

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Steven J. Abel
,
Ian A. Boutle
,
Kirk Waite
,
Stuart Fox
,
Philip R. A. Brown
,
Richard Cotton
,
Gary Lloyd
,
Tom W. Choularton
, and
Keith N. Bower

Abstract

Aircraft observations in a cold-air outbreak to the north of the United Kingdom are used to examine the boundary layer and cloud properties in an overcast mixed-phase stratocumulus cloud layer and across the transition to more broken open-cellular convection. The stratocumulus cloud is primarily composed of liquid drops with small concentrations of ice particles and there is a switch to more glaciated conditions in the shallow cumulus clouds downwind. The rapid change in cloud morphology is accompanied by enhanced precipitation with secondary ice processes becoming active and greater thermodynamic gradients in the subcloud layer. The measurements also show a removal of boundary layer accumulation mode aerosols via precipitation processes across the transition that are similar to those observed in the subtropics in pockets of open cells. Simulations using a convection-permitting (1.5-km grid spacing) regional version of the Met Office Unified Model were able to reproduce many of the salient features of the cloud field although the liquid water path in the stratiform region was too low. Sensitivity studies showed that ice was too active at removing supercooled liquid water from the cloud layer and that improvements could be made by limiting the overlap between the liquid water and ice phases. Precipitation appears to be the key mechanism responsible for initiating the transition from closed- to open-cellular convection by decoupling the boundary layer and depleting liquid water from the stratiform cloud.

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