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Warm Rain in Southern West Africa: A Case Study at Savè

1
Laboratoire d’Aérologie, Université de Toulouse, CNRS, UPS, 31000 Toulouse, France
2
Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), 76344 Karlsruhe, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Current address: LACy, Laboratoire de l’Atmosphère et des Cyclones, CNRS, Université de la Réunion, Météo-France, 97490 Saint-Denis de La Réunion, France.
Atmosphere 2020, 11(3), 298; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos11030298
Received: 24 February 2020 / Revised: 11 March 2020 / Accepted: 14 March 2020 / Published: 19 March 2020
A warm-rain episode over southern West Africa is analyzed using unprecedented X-band radar observations from Savè, Benin and a Large-Eddy Simulation (LES) over a 240 × 240 km 2 domain. While warm rain contributes to 1% of the total rainfall in the LES, its spatial extent accounts for 24% of the area covered by rainfall. Almost all the warm-rain cells tracked in the observation and the LES have a size between 2 and 10 km and a lifetime varying from 5 to 60 min. During the nighttime, warm-rain cells are caused by the dissipation of large deep-convection systems while during the daytime they are formed by the boundary-layer thermals. The vertical extension of the warm-rain cells is limited by vertical wind shear at their top. In the simulation, their top is 1.6 km higher with respect to the radar observations due to the large-scale environment given by wrong initial conditions. This study shows the challenge of simulating warm rain in southern West Africa, a key phenomenon during the little dry season. View Full-Text
Keywords: warm rain; X-band radar; Meso-NH model; LES; Savè; southern West Africa; DACCIWA warm rain; X-band radar; Meso-NH model; LES; Savè; southern West Africa; DACCIWA
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Reinares Martínez, I.; Chaboureau, J.-P.; Handwerker, J. Warm Rain in Southern West Africa: A Case Study at Savè. Atmosphere 2020, 11, 298.

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