3.1 Dave Raymond’s Seminal Contributions on the Thermodynamic Control of Convection and Its Interaction with the Large Scale (Invited Presentation)

Thursday, 11 January 2018: 1:30 PM
Ballroom C (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
Adam H. Sobel, Columbia Univ., Palisades, NY

Though Dave Raymond’s work on tropical convection extends back to the 1970s, we identify a “modern period”, starting around the mid-1990s, when he began to consider in a general way the mechanisms governing the interaction of convection and larger-scale dynamics, with a focus on thermodynamic controls on convection. We can identify several ideas that emerge in the first few years of this period that have continued in Dave’s work and that of many of us influenced by it: boundary layer quasi-equilibrium; the role of free tropospheric moisture in regulating convection; the use of the moist entropy budget, both diagnostically and prognostically; and, a bit later, the weak temperature gradient approximation. I will focus on the development of these ideas over the last 20 years, considering their application to the MJO, tropical cyclones, and other phenomena. I will emphasize the qualities which, individually and in combination, have made Dave such an important and unique figure in our field: his integration of field work and theory; his physicist’s approach, and DIY approach to numerical modeling (and everything else); his relentless and incisive quest for true causality; and, at a more personal level, his lack of ego and great generosity towards junior colleagues.
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