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Towards Unifying the Planetary Boundary Layer and Shallow Convection in CAM5 with the Eddy-Diffusivity/Mass-Flux Approach

Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, 4800 Oak Grove Drive M/S: 233-300, Pasadena, CA 91109, USA
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Atmosphere 2019, 10(9), 484; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10090484
Received: 30 July 2019 / Revised: 13 August 2019 / Accepted: 16 August 2019 / Published: 22 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Turbulent Transport in Atmospheric Boundary Layers)
The modular structure of the boundary layer and convection parameterizations in atmospheric models have long been affecting the numerical representation of subgrid-scale motions and their mutual interactions. A promising alternative, the eddy-diffusivity/mass-flux approach (EDMF), has the potential for unifying the existing formulations into a consistent scheme and improving some of the long-standing issues. This study documents a step towards developing such a unified approach by implementing a stochastic multi-plume EDMF scheme into the Community Atmosphere Model (Version 5.0). Its performance in single-column mode is evaluated against the control parameterization and large-eddy simulation (LES) for two benchmark cases: marine and continental shallow convection. Overall, the results for the two parameterizations agree well with each other and with LES in terms of mean profiles of moist conserved variables and their vertical fluxes, as well as the updraft properties. However, systematic differences between the two schemes, especially for transient continental convection, are also documented. Using EDMF helps improve some of the parameterized features of shallow convection. In particular, for the highest tested vertical resolution, the EDMF cloud base and top heights and the vertical fluxes of energy and water are remarkably close to LES. View Full-Text
Keywords: planetary boundary layer; shallow convection; coarse-resolution atmospheric models; eddy-diffusivity/mass-flux approach; unified convection parameterizations planetary boundary layer; shallow convection; coarse-resolution atmospheric models; eddy-diffusivity/mass-flux approach; unified convection parameterizations
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J. Kurowski, M.; Thrastarson, H.T.; Suselj, K.; Teixeira, J. Towards Unifying the Planetary Boundary Layer and Shallow Convection in CAM5 with the Eddy-Diffusivity/Mass-Flux Approach. Atmosphere 2019, 10, 484.

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