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Title: Vertical structure and physical processes of the Madden-Julian oscillation: Linking hindcast fidelity to simulated diabatic heating and moistening

Abstract

Here, many theories for the Madden-Julian oscillation (MJO) focus on diabatic processes, particularly the evolution of vertical heating and moistening. Poor MJO performance in weather and climate models is often blamed on biases in these processes and their interactions with the large-scale circulation. We introduce one of the three components of a model evaluation project, which aims to connect MJO fidelity in models to their representations of several physical processes, focusing on diabatic heating and moistening. This component consists of 20 day hindcasts, initialized daily during two MJO events in winter 2009–2010. The 13 models exhibit a range of skill: several have accurate forecasts to 20 days lead, while others perform similarly to statistical models (8–11 days). Models that maintain the observed MJO amplitude accurately predict propagation, but not vice versa. We find no link between hindcast fidelity and the precipitation-moisture relationship, in contrast to other recent studies. There is also no relationship between models' performance and the evolution of their diabatic heating profiles with rain rate. A more robust association emerges between models' fidelity and net moistening: the highest-skill models show a clear transition from low-level moistening for light rainfall to midlevel moistening at moderate rainfall and upper levelmore » moistening for heavy rainfall. The midlevel moistening, arising from both dynamics and physics, may be most important. Accurately representing many processes may be necessary but not sufficient for capturing the MJO, which suggests that models fail to predict the MJO for a broad range of reasons and limits the possibility of finding a panacea.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [1];  [2];  [2];  [3];  [3];  [4];  [5];  [6];  [7];  [8];  [9];  [10];  [11];  [12];  [13];  [14];  [15];  [16];  [17] more »;  [3];  [16] « less
  1. Univ. of Reading, Reading (United Kingdom)
  2. Univ. of California, Los Angeles, CA (United States); Jet Propulsion Lab., Pasadena, CA (United States)
  3. UK Met Office, Exeter (United Kingdom)
  4. Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute, Norrkoping (Sweden)
  5. National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO (United States)
  6. Univ. of Washington, Seattle, WA (United States)
  7. Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
  8. Canadian Centre for Climate Modelling and Analysis, Environment Canada, Victoria, BC (Canada)
  9. Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, Yokosuka (Japan); Tokyo Univ., Tokyo (Japan)
  10. Univ. of California, Irvine, CA (United States)
  11. Naval Research Lab., Monterey, CA (United States)
  12. CNRM-GAME, Toulouse (France)
  13. Meteorological Research Institute, Tsukuba (Japan)
  14. European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, Reading (United Kingdom)
  15. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), Greenbelt, MD (United States)
  16. Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, CA (United States)
  17. Univ. of Miami, Coral Gables, FL (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1410067
Report Number(s):
LLNL-JRNL-741126
Journal ID: ISSN 2169-897X
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC52-07NA27344
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 120; Journal Issue: 10; Journal ID: ISSN 2169-897X
Publisher:
American Geophysical Union
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
58 GEOSCIENCES; Madden-Julian oscillation; tropical convection; diabatic heating; model evaluation; hindcasts; diabatic moistening

Citation Formats

Klingaman, Nicholas P., Woolnough, Steven J., Jiang, Xianan, Waliser, Duane, Xavier, Prince K., Petch, Jon, Caian, Mihaela, Hannay, Cecile, Kim, Daehyun, Ma, Hsi -Yen, Merryfield, William J., Miyakawa, Tomoki, Pritchard, Mike, Ridout, James A., Roehrig, Romain, Shindo, Eiki, Vitart, Frederic, Wang, Hailan, Cavanaugh, Nicholas R., Mapes, Brian E., Shelly, Ann, and Zhang, Guang J. Vertical structure and physical processes of the Madden-Julian oscillation: Linking hindcast fidelity to simulated diabatic heating and moistening. United States: N. p., 2015. Web. doi:10.1002/2014JD022374.
Klingaman, Nicholas P., Woolnough, Steven J., Jiang, Xianan, Waliser, Duane, Xavier, Prince K., Petch, Jon, Caian, Mihaela, Hannay, Cecile, Kim, Daehyun, Ma, Hsi -Yen, Merryfield, William J., Miyakawa, Tomoki, Pritchard, Mike, Ridout, James A., Roehrig, Romain, Shindo, Eiki, Vitart, Frederic, Wang, Hailan, Cavanaugh, Nicholas R., Mapes, Brian E., Shelly, Ann, & Zhang, Guang J. Vertical structure and physical processes of the Madden-Julian oscillation: Linking hindcast fidelity to simulated diabatic heating and moistening. United States. doi:10.1002/2014JD022374.
Klingaman, Nicholas P., Woolnough, Steven J., Jiang, Xianan, Waliser, Duane, Xavier, Prince K., Petch, Jon, Caian, Mihaela, Hannay, Cecile, Kim, Daehyun, Ma, Hsi -Yen, Merryfield, William J., Miyakawa, Tomoki, Pritchard, Mike, Ridout, James A., Roehrig, Romain, Shindo, Eiki, Vitart, Frederic, Wang, Hailan, Cavanaugh, Nicholas R., Mapes, Brian E., Shelly, Ann, and Zhang, Guang J. Fri . "Vertical structure and physical processes of the Madden-Julian oscillation: Linking hindcast fidelity to simulated diabatic heating and moistening". United States. doi:10.1002/2014JD022374. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1410067.
@article{osti_1410067,
title = {Vertical structure and physical processes of the Madden-Julian oscillation: Linking hindcast fidelity to simulated diabatic heating and moistening},
author = {Klingaman, Nicholas P. and Woolnough, Steven J. and Jiang, Xianan and Waliser, Duane and Xavier, Prince K. and Petch, Jon and Caian, Mihaela and Hannay, Cecile and Kim, Daehyun and Ma, Hsi -Yen and Merryfield, William J. and Miyakawa, Tomoki and Pritchard, Mike and Ridout, James A. and Roehrig, Romain and Shindo, Eiki and Vitart, Frederic and Wang, Hailan and Cavanaugh, Nicholas R. and Mapes, Brian E. and Shelly, Ann and Zhang, Guang J.},
abstractNote = {Here, many theories for the Madden-Julian oscillation (MJO) focus on diabatic processes, particularly the evolution of vertical heating and moistening. Poor MJO performance in weather and climate models is often blamed on biases in these processes and their interactions with the large-scale circulation. We introduce one of the three components of a model evaluation project, which aims to connect MJO fidelity in models to their representations of several physical processes, focusing on diabatic heating and moistening. This component consists of 20 day hindcasts, initialized daily during two MJO events in winter 2009–2010. The 13 models exhibit a range of skill: several have accurate forecasts to 20 days lead, while others perform similarly to statistical models (8–11 days). Models that maintain the observed MJO amplitude accurately predict propagation, but not vice versa. We find no link between hindcast fidelity and the precipitation-moisture relationship, in contrast to other recent studies. There is also no relationship between models' performance and the evolution of their diabatic heating profiles with rain rate. A more robust association emerges between models' fidelity and net moistening: the highest-skill models show a clear transition from low-level moistening for light rainfall to midlevel moistening at moderate rainfall and upper level moistening for heavy rainfall. The midlevel moistening, arising from both dynamics and physics, may be most important. Accurately representing many processes may be necessary but not sufficient for capturing the MJO, which suggests that models fail to predict the MJO for a broad range of reasons and limits the possibility of finding a panacea.},
doi = {10.1002/2014JD022374},
journal = {Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres},
number = 10,
volume = 120,
place = {United States},
year = {2015},
month = {4}
}

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