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Title: Intercomparison of Large-eddy Simulations of Arctic Mixed-phase Clouds: Importance of Ice Size Distribution Assumptions

Large-eddy simulations of mixed-phase Arctic clouds by 11 different models are analyzed with the goal of improving understanding and model representation of processes controlling the evolution of these clouds. In a case based on observations from the Indirect and Semi-Direct Aerosol Campaign (ISDAC), it is found that ice number concentration, Ni, exerts significant influence on the cloud structure. Increasing Ni leads to a substantial reduction in liquid water path (LWP) and potential cloud dissipation, in agreement with earlier studies. By comparing simulations with the same microphysics coupled to different dynamical cores as well as the same dynamics coupled to different microphysics schemes, it is found that the ice water path (IWP) is mainly controlled by ice microphysics, while the inter-model differences in LWP are largely driven by physics and numerics of the dynamical cores. In contrast to previous intercomparisons, all models here use the same ice particle properties (i.e., mass-size, mass-fall speed, and mass-capacitance relationships) and a common radiation parameterization. The constrained setup exposes the importance of ice particle size distributions (PSD) in influencing cloud evolution. A clear separation in LWP and IWP predicted by models with bin and bulk microphysical treatments is documented and attributed primarily to the assumedmore » shape of ice PSD used in bulk schemes. Compared to the bin schemes that explicitly predict the PSD, schemes assuming exponential ice PSD underestimate ice growth by vapor deposition and overestimate mass-weighted fall speed leading to an underprediction of IWP by a factor of two in the considered case.« less
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Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
25701; KP1701000
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems, 6(1):223-248
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US), Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
large-eddy simulations; Arctic; mixed-phase clouds; Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory