Influence of Microphysics Choice on Downburst Development in Simulated Air Mass Thunderstorms

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Sunday, 2 February 2014
Hall C3 (The Georgia World Congress Center )
Nicholas E. Rothfuss, Central Michigan University, Mount Pleasant, MI; and L. Orf

For engineering research, full-cloud models offer superior physics to subcloud and impinging jet schemes, but at requisite resolutions are computationally expensive. Consequently, input parameters, including microphysics choice, must be carefully deliberated. In order to investigate the influence of microphysics on simulated downburst development, simulations of air mass thunderstorms are run using the CM1 cloud model for typical dry and wet microburst environments. For each environment type, simulations are varied only in terms of microphysical parametrization, with the Morrison, Thompson, and Lin Farley Orville (LFO) schemes utilized. Resulting similarities and differences in maximum wind speed distribution and intensity are discussed, as are consequent cross-sectional variations in wind, buoyancy, and moisture profiles of representative downbursts in the mature storm.