Session 17.3 Sensitivity of MCS development to the initial convective arrangement

Friday, 10 November 2006: 11:00 AM
St. Louis AB (Adam's Mark Hotel)
Israel L. Jirak, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Prescott, AZ; and W. R. Cotton

Presentation PDF (761.6 kB)

Mesoscale convective systems (MCSs) that develop from linearly-arranged convection at initiation have been observed to evolve toward larger, longer-lived, more severe, and rainier systems than MCSs that develop from scattered convection at initiation. To examine and better understand this observation, the Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (RAMS) is used to investigate the sensitivity of MCS development to the initial convective ensemble structure. Several idealized simulations of MCS development are performed that only differ in the initial arrangement of convection, as imposed by the strategic placement of warm, moist bubbles. These simulations utilize a single grid with 1.5 km horizontal grid spacing over a 750 km x 600 km domain for a 12-hour period and are initialized with an observed MCS proximity sounding (LBF; 00Z 20 May 1998). Preliminary analysis of these simulations reveals that the initial convective arrangement does have a significant effect on the characteristics of a developing MCS. More insight on this effect could be useful to forecasters in predicting the potential impact of MCSs.
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