3 Discerning Environmental Dependencies on Mixed-Phase Cloud Properties: With a Focus on Ice Particle Habit Evolution

Monday, 7 July 2014
Kara Sulia, NOAA/GFDL, Princeton, NJ

The persistence of mixed-phase clouds is not fully understood. The supercooled liquid water within these clouds controls the longevity of the layer through its influence on cloud-top long-wave radiative cooling, which drives buoyant production and maintains the layer. However, the preferred growth of ice crystals at the expense of the liquid water deems the cloud unstable and creates potential for collapse. Through the Adaptive Habit Method, the depositional growth of ice particles is improved, the consequential effects on cloud dynamics are evaluated using WRF (LES), and theoretical validation is achieved through the use of polarimetric radar data. The method has recently been implemented into GFDL AM3 (GCM), where early results indicate improvements in cloud water phase prediction on longer time-scales, suggesting the importance of multi-scale effects on climate.
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