Environmental & Climate Sciences Department Seminar

"Orographic Convection and Precipitation in the Tropics: Wind Speed Control and Aerosol Interactions"

Presented by Alison Nugent, UCAR

Tuesday, April 26, 2016, 11:00 am — Conference Room, Bldg 815E

Mountains around the globe control precipitation patterns and water resources. Here the focus is on understanding orographic precipitation in the tropics over a small island. An aircraft dataset from the Dominica Experiment (DOMEX) which took place in the eastern Caribbean is utilized. The aircraft measured upstream and downstream airflow properties as well as the properties of the convective clouds over the island. These flight data along with an idealized numerical model are used to understand the role of wind speed in controlling the transition from thermally to mechanically forced orographic convection. When the convection is thermally driven, DOMEX observations show clear evidence of aerosol-cloud-precipitation interactions; the aerosol-aware Thompson microphysics scheme in WRF is used to investigate. Using this framework of understanding from an orographic case, a broader view of marine cloud microphysics can be gained.

Hosted by: Jian Wang

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