P2.18 WRF model simulations of tropical convection observed during the Tropical Warm Pool International Cloud Experiment (TWP-ICE)

Wednesday, 19 August 2009
Arches/Deer Valley (Sheraton Salt Lake City Hotel)
Kathrin Wapler, German Weather Service; and T. P. Lane, P. T. May, C. Jakob, M. J. Manton, and S. T. Siems

Nested cloud-resolving model simulations of tropical convective clouds observed during the recent Tropical Warm Pool International Cloud Experiment (TWP-ICE)are conducted using the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model. The WRF model is configured with a highest-resolving domain that uses 1.3 km grid spacing and is centered over Darwin, Australia. The performance of the model in simulating two different convective regimes observed during TWP-ICE is considered. The first regime is characteristic of the active monsoon, which features widespread cloud cover that is similar to maritime convection. The second regime is a monsoon break, which contains intense localized systems that are representative of diurnally forced continental convection. Many aspects of the model performances are considered, including their sensitivity to physical parameterizations and initialization time, and the spatial statistics of rainfall accumulations and the rain rate distribution. While the simulations highlight many challenges and difficulties in correctly modeling the convection in the two regimes, they show that provided the mesoscale environment is reproduced adequately by the model, the statistics of the simulated rainfall agrees reasonably well with the observations.
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