SMART-R Latent Heating and Divergence Profiles during DYNAMO/CINDY2011/AMIE

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Monday, 5 January 2015
Fiaz Ahmed, Texas A&M University, Bryan, TX; and C. Schumacher

Latent heating and divergence profiles are obtained from SMART-Radar observations and used to study the ebb and flow of convection during the DYNAMO/CINDY2011/AMIE field campaign. A new latent heating retrieval algorithm is also introduced. Unlike previous algorithms that are based on radar-derived rain rates, this algorithm relies mainly on rain area and thus is a less derived product than one constrained by rain. The algorithm uses a look-up table generated by a month-long, high-resolution Weather Forecasting Model (WRF) simulation to match echo area, echo-top heights, and intensity of convective cells (as determined by near-surface reflectivity) to vertical heating profiles. The radar-retrieved latent heating quantifies the shallow convective heating during MJO initiation, although it is unclear if this is sufficient heating to prompt enough large-scale moisture convergence to impact MJO organization. Divergence profiles are also obtained from SMART-R using the CYLBIN method. While the divergence profiles at low levels are affected by tree blockage, a sufficient number of profiles are available for hours when the echo coverage criteria of at least 50% was satisfied to create a divergence climatology throughout the evolution of the MJO. The MJO leaves its imprints on the radar divergence profiles through an elevation of the level of peak convergence. Divergence profiles associated with congestus clouds were also seen, with convergence at low levels and divergence at mid levels signifying a detraining cloud-top.