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Atmosphere 2017, 8(3), 58; doi:10.3390/atmos8030058

The Influence of an Increase of the Mediterranean Sea Surface Temperature on Two Nocturnal Offshore Rainbands: A Numerical Experiment

1
Department of Physics, Unversitat Politècnica de Catalunya, BarcelonaTech, 08034 Barcelona, Spain
2
Institute of Space Studies of Catalonia (IEEC–UPC), 08034 Barcelona, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Ricardo Machado Trigo
Received: 15 January 2017 / Revised: 10 March 2017 / Accepted: 16 March 2017 / Published: 18 March 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue WRF Simulations at the Mesoscale: From the Microscale to Macroscale)
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Abstract

Using the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) – Advanced Research WRF (ARW) mesoscale model (WRF–ARW), we investigate how two nocturnal offshore rainbands occurring in the Mediterranean basin are modified in a warmer sea surface temperature (SST). After sunset, the thermal difference between land and sea air increases. Driven by drainage winds or land breeze, the inland cold air interacts with the relatively warmer and moister air over the sea. Vertical movement of sea air over the boundary between the two air masses may induce cloud and rain bands offshore. When an increase of SST is prescribed in the WRF simulations, a change in the precipitation pattern is simulated. The numerical experiments show an increase both in the extension and location of the rainbands and in the precipitation rate. These changes, induced by the modified SST, are analyzed by estimating and comparing several parameters such as the location of level of free convection (LFC), Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE), or the triggering, deceleration and blockage terms of simplified conceptual models. View Full-Text
Keywords: WRF; numerical experiment; sea surface temperature (SST); density currents; nocturnal rainbands WRF; numerical experiment; sea surface temperature (SST); density currents; nocturnal rainbands
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Mazon, J.; Pino, D. The Influence of an Increase of the Mediterranean Sea Surface Temperature on Two Nocturnal Offshore Rainbands: A Numerical Experiment. Atmosphere 2017, 8, 58.

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