J1.5 Paths Towards Routine High Resolution Atmospheric Modeling of the North Slope of Alaska

Wednesday, 25 January 2017: 9:30 AM
Conference Center: Skagit 3 (Washington State Convention Center )
Erika Roesler, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM

Handout (8.6 MB)

Using higher resolution atmospheric models improves cloud representation for many convective cloud regimes.  The use of higher resolution atmospheric models for improving polar clouds representation is explored in this work.   Numerous pathways exist in producing high resolution model configuration.   We will present two modeling techniques in development for polar cloud simulation.  The first technique uses variable resolution in an atmospheric general circulation model (AGCM).  In this technique, a region of high resolution (1/8-degree or ~14km) is selected over a space on the surface of the earth, and low resolution (1 degree or ~110km) is run elsewhere.  A transition region bridges the low and high resolution areas.  This technique uses one model, but cannot be pushed beyond 1/8-degree resolution due to hydrostatic limits. The second technique uses a cloud resolving model (CRM) called the System for Atmospheric Modeling, SAM, initialized and forced by reanalysis products.   The resolution of a CRM can be at the meter-scale, but lacks surface and topographical representations that the AGCM contains.  We test SAM under numerous spatial resolutions and domain sizes.   Although these two model configurations have many dissimilarities, we anticipate our understanding about minimum requirements for high resolution modeling of the atmosphere in polar regions will be greatly improved.  Sandia National Laboratories is a multi-program laboratory managed and operated by Sandia Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Corporation, for the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration under contract DE-AC04-94AL85000. SAND2016-7401 A
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