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Makoto Aoki, Hironori Iwai, Katsuhiro Nakagawa, Shoken Ishii, and Kohei Mizutani

Abstract

Rainfall velocity, raindrop size distribution (DSD), and vertical wind velocity were simultaneously observed with 2.05- and 1.54-μm coherent Doppler lidars during convective and stratiform rain events. A retrieval method is based on identifying two separate spectra from the convolution of the aerosol and precipitation Doppler lidar spectra. The vertical wind velocity was retrieved from the aerosol spectrum peak and then the terminal rainfall velocity corrected by the vertical air motion from the precipitation spectrum peak was obtained. The DSD was derived from the precipitation spectrum using the relationship between the raindrop size and the terminal rainfall velocity. A comparison of the 1-min-averaged rainfall velocity from Doppler lidar measurements at a minimum range and that from a collocated ground-based optical disdrometer revealed high correlation coefficients of over 0.89 for both convective and stratiform rain events. The 1-min-averaged DSDs retrieved from the Doppler lidar spectrum using parametric and nonparametric methods are also in good agreement with those measured with the optical disdrometer with a correlation coefficient of over 0.80 for all rain events. To retrieve the DSD, the parametric method assumes a mathematical function for the DSD and the nonparametric method computes the direct deconvolution of the measured Doppler lidar spectrum without assuming a DSD function. It is confirmed that the Doppler lidar can retrieve the rainfall velocity and DSD during relatively heavy rain, whereas the ratio of valid data significantly decreases in light rain events because it is extremely difficult to separate the overlapping rain and aerosol peaks in the Doppler spectrum.

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Takuya Kawabata, Hironori Iwai, Hiromu Seko, Yoshinori Shoji, Kazuo Saito, Shoken Ishii, and Kohei Mizutani

Abstract

The authors evaluated the effects of assimilating three-dimensional Doppler wind lidar (DWL) data on the forecast of the heavy rainfall event of 5 July 2010 in Japan, produced by an isolated mesoscale convective system (MCS) at a meso-gamma scale in a system consisting of only warm rain clouds. Several impact experiments using the nonhydrostatic four-dimensional variational data assimilation system (NHM-4DVAR) and the Japan Meteorological Agency nonhydrostatic model with a 2-km horizontal grid spacing were conducted in which 1) no observations were assimilated (NODA), 2) radar reflectivity and radial velocity determined by Doppler radar and precipitable water vapor determined by GPS satellite observations were assimilated (CTL), and 3) radial velocity determined by DWL were added to the CTL experiment (LDR) and five data denial and two observational error sensitivity experiments. Although both NODA and CTL simulated an MCS, only LDR captured the intensity, location, and horizontal scale of the observed MCS. Assimilating DWL data improved the wind direction and speed of low-level airflows, thus improving the accuracy of the simulated water vapor flux. The examination of the impacts of specific assimilations and assigned observation errors showed that assimilation of all data types is important for forecasting intense MCSs. The investigation of the MCS structure showed that large amounts of water vapor were supplied to the rainfall event by southerly flow. A midlevel inversion layer led to the production of exclusively liquid water particles in the MCS, and in combination with the humid airflow into the MCS, this inversion layer may be another important factor in its development.

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Guixing Chen, Xinyue Zhu, Weiming Sha, Toshiki Iwasaki, Hiromu Seko, Kazuo Saito, Hironori Iwai, and Shoken Ishii

Abstract

Horizontal convective rolls (HCRs) that develop in sea breezes greatly influence local weather in coastal areas. In this study, the authors present a realistic simulation of sea-breeze HCRs over an urban-scale area at a resolution of a few meters. An advanced Down-Scaling Simulation System (DS3) is built to derive the analyzed data using a nonhydrostatic model and data assimilation scheme that drive a building-resolving computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model. The mesoscale-analyzed data well capture the inland penetration of the sea breeze in northeastern Japan. The CFD model reproduces the HCRs over Sendai Airport in terms of their coastal initiation, inland growth, streamwise orientation, specific locations, roll wavelength, secondary flows, and regional differences due to complex surfaces. The simulated HCRs agree fairly well with those observed by dual-Doppler lidar and heliborne sensors. Both the simulation and observation analyses suggest that roll updrafts typically originate in the narrow bands of low-speed streaks and warm air near the ground. The HCRs are primarily driven and sustained by a combination of wind shear and buoyancy forces within the slightly unstable sea-breeze layer. In contrast, the experiment without data assimilation exhibits a higher deficiency in the reproduction of roll characteristics. The findings highlight that CFD modeling, given reliable mesoscale weather and surface conditions, aids in high-precision forecasting of HCRs at unprecedented high resolutions, which may help determine the roll structure, dynamics, and impacts on local weather.

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Hironori Iwai, Shoken Ishii, Ryoko Oda, Kohei Mizutani, Shinya Sekizawa, and Yasuhiro Murayama

Abstract

A coherent 2-μm differential absorption and wind lidar (Co2DiaWiL) has been built with a high-power Q-switched Tm,Hm:YLF laser to measure CO2 concentration and radial wind speed. The performance of the Co2DiaWiL is described and analyzed, with a view to demonstrating system capabilities for remote measurements of wind velocities in the atmospheric boundary layer and free troposphere. Bias in the velocity measurements was estimated at −0.0069 m s−1 using measurements from a stationary hard target. The Co2DiaWiL achieved a velocity precision of 0.12 m s−1, derived from the magnitude of random error in radial wind velocity measurements. These measurements were made for ranges out to 20–25 km by using a horizontally fixed beam mode for average times of 1 min. Quantitative intercomparisons of 1-min averages between the Co2DiaWiL and a sonic anemometer revealed a correlation coefficient of 0.99. This study demonstrated measurements of horizontal wind profiles, by making radial wind velocity measurements with the Co2DiaWiL using conical scanning. Profile differences at higher levels could be attributed to probable large horizontal separations of the radiosondes and the low signal-to-noise ratio of the Co2DiaWiL. A pseudo-dual-Doppler technique was developed to retrieve horizontal wind components with a single-Doppler lidar and a steering mirror. Intercomparisons of the 1-min-averaged u and υ components from the pseudo-dual-Doppler lidar measurements with those from the sonic anemometer revealed correlation coefficients of 0.84 and 0.83, respectively.

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Guixing Chen, Xinyue Zhu, Weiming Sha, Toshiki Iwasaki, Hiromu Seko, Kazuo Saito, Hironori Iwai, and Shoken Ishii

Abstract

Horizontal convective rolls form in coastal areas around Sendai Airport during sea-breeze events. Using a building-resolving computational fluid dynamics model nested in an advanced forecast system with a data assimilation scheme, the authors perform a series of sensitivity experiments to investigate the impacts of land use and buildings on these rolls. The results show that the roll positions, intensities, and structures are significantly affected by variations in land use and the presence of buildings. Land-use heterogeneity is responsible for generating rolls with evident regional features. Major rolls tend to develop downwind of warm surfaces, and they dominate over neighboring rolls; thus, a heterogeneity-scale mode is imposed on the inherent roll wavelength. The roll’s rapid growth is attributable to warm surfaces that initiate a strong coupling among turbulent thermals, convective updrafts, pressure perturbations, and secondary flows in sea breezes. The heterogeneity-induced features differ considerably from the nearly homogeneous features that form over uniform surfaces. Additionally, the wake flow behind buildings helps organize near-surface warm air into streamwise bands that drive streaky ejections. The building-induced turbulence acts to modify secondary flows and displace roll updrafts toward building wakes. Such effects are most effective over villages with scattered houses that are aligned with the ambient wind. Building signatures are elongated in downwind open areas due to sustained secondary circulations. An analysis of turbulent kinetic energy shows that both land use and buildings regulate energy generation and transport, resulting in a clear response in roll growth. Thus, including complex surfaces in forecast models helps determine detailed characteristics and structures of roll convection over coastal regions.

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Shoken Ishii, Kohei Mizutani, Philippe Baron, Hironori Iwai, Ryoko Oda, Toshikazu Itabe, Hirotake Fukuoka, Takayoshi Ishikawa, Mizuki Koyama, Tomoaki Tanaka, Isamu Morino, Osamu Uchino, Atsushi Sato, and Kazuhiro Asai

Abstract

A coherent 2-μm differential absorption and wind lidar (Co2DiaWiL) with a 2-μm single-frequency Q-switched laser with laser frequency offset locking was used for long-range CO2 measurement. The frequency stabilization of the single-frequency λ on pulsed laser was 1.0 MHz. Experimental horizontal CO2 measurement over a column range of 2.6–5.6 km and 900 shot pairs (1-min integration time) was conducted on 22 October 2009 to examine the detection sensitivity of the Co2DiaWiL. The achieved precision was less than 2.1%. The root-mean-square of the differences between the 30-min CO2 averages measured by the Co2DiaWiL and a ground-based in situ instrument was 0.9% (3.5 ppm). Experimental vertical CO2 measurements were conducted in February 2010 and January and February 2011. The partial CO2 column-averaged dry-air mixing ratios (XCO2) for an altitude between 0.4 and 1.0 km in 2010 and 2011 were 403.2 ± 4.2 and 405.6 ± 3.4 ppm, respectively. In the paper, the Co2DiaWiL results were well validated carefully against those of the airborne in situ instrument; they agreed well within the margin of error. The values of XCO2 measured in presence of cirrus clouds near the tropopause (hard target cases) show a difference of less than 4.1 ppm with the airborne measurements performed on 14 February 2010. This result demonstrates the capability of the Co2DiaWiL to measure XCO2 within a precision better than 1%.

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