The authors thank Peter Bechtold for comments on ERA-Interim assimilation systems. Courtney Schumacher and two anonymous reviewers provided constructive comments on an early manuscript of this study. The availability of the reanalysis data from ERA-Interim, CFSR, and MERRA, especially the direct output of QT from CFSR and MERRA, are highly appreciated. Richard Johnson and Paul Ciesielski made most of the sounding Q1 calculations. This study was supported by a grant by NOAA’s Modeling, Analysis, Prediction and Projection (MAPP) program.
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In this study, QT is used to refer to total diabatic heating output directly from reanalyses as temperature tendency due to all diabatic processes, as opposed to Q1, which is used to refer to total diabatic heating estimated as a residual of the thermodynamic equation.
Results are not sensitive to this threshold.