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Impacts of an Improved Low-Level Cloud Scheme on the Eastern Pacific ITCZ-Cold Tongue Complex


doi: 10.1007/BF02918488

  • A statistically-based low-level cloud parameterization scheme is introduced, modified, and applied in the Flexible coupled General Circulation Model (FGCM-0). It is found that the low-level cloud scheme makes improved simulations of low-level cloud fractions and net surface shortwave radiation fluxes in the subtropical eastern oceans off western coasts in the model. Accompanying the improvement in the net surface shortwave radiation fluxes, the simulated distribution of SSTs is more reasonably asymmetrical about the equator in the tropical eastern Pacific, which suppresses, to some extent, the development of the double ITCZ in the model. Warm SST biases in the ITCZ north of the equator are more realistically reduced, too. But the equatorial cold tongue is strengthened and extends further westward, which reduces the precipitation rate in the western equatorial Pacific but increases it in the ITCZ north of the equator in the far eastern Pacific. It is demonstrated that the low-level cloud-radiation feedback would enhance the cooperative feedback between the equatorial cold tongue and the ITCZ. Based on surface layer heat budget analyses, it is demonstrated that the reduction of SSTs is attributed to both the thermodynamic cooling process modified by the increase of cloud fractions and the oceanic dynamical cooling processes associated with the strengthened surface wind in the eastern equatorial Pacific, but it is mainly attributed to oceanic dynamical cooling processes associated with the strengthening of surface wind in the central and western equatorial Pacific.
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Manuscript History

Manuscript received: 10 July 2005
Manuscript revised: 10 July 2005
通讯作者: 陈斌, bchen63@163.com
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    沈阳化工大学材料科学与工程学院 沈阳 110142

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Impacts of an Improved Low-Level Cloud Scheme on the Eastern Pacific ITCZ-Cold Tongue Complex

  • 1. State Key Laboratory of Numerical Modeling for Atmospheric Sciences and Geophysical Fluid Dynamics, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029;Beijing Institute of Applied Meteorology, Beijing 100029,State Key Laboratory of Numerical Modeling for Atmospheric Sciences and Geophysical Fluid Dynamics, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029,State Key Laboratory of Numerical Modeling for Atmospheric Sciences and Geophysical Fluid Dynamics, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029,State Key Laboratory of Numerical Modeling for Atmospheric Sciences and Geophysical Fluid Dynamics, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029,State Key Laboratory of Numerical Modeling for Atmospheric Sciences and Geophysical Fluid Dynamics, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029;National Climate Center, Beijing 100081

Abstract: A statistically-based low-level cloud parameterization scheme is introduced, modified, and applied in the Flexible coupled General Circulation Model (FGCM-0). It is found that the low-level cloud scheme makes improved simulations of low-level cloud fractions and net surface shortwave radiation fluxes in the subtropical eastern oceans off western coasts in the model. Accompanying the improvement in the net surface shortwave radiation fluxes, the simulated distribution of SSTs is more reasonably asymmetrical about the equator in the tropical eastern Pacific, which suppresses, to some extent, the development of the double ITCZ in the model. Warm SST biases in the ITCZ north of the equator are more realistically reduced, too. But the equatorial cold tongue is strengthened and extends further westward, which reduces the precipitation rate in the western equatorial Pacific but increases it in the ITCZ north of the equator in the far eastern Pacific. It is demonstrated that the low-level cloud-radiation feedback would enhance the cooperative feedback between the equatorial cold tongue and the ITCZ. Based on surface layer heat budget analyses, it is demonstrated that the reduction of SSTs is attributed to both the thermodynamic cooling process modified by the increase of cloud fractions and the oceanic dynamical cooling processes associated with the strengthened surface wind in the eastern equatorial Pacific, but it is mainly attributed to oceanic dynamical cooling processes associated with the strengthening of surface wind in the central and western equatorial Pacific.

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