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Title: Aerosol Effects on Cirrus through Ice Nucleation in the Community Atmosphere Model CAM5 with a Statistical Cirrus Scheme

A statistical cirrus cloud scheme that tracks ice saturation ratio in the clear-sky and cloudy portion of a grid box separately has been implemented into NCAR CAM5 to provide a consistent treatment of ice nucleation and cloud formation. Simulated ice supersaturation and ice crystal number concentrations strongly depend on the number concentrations of heterogeneous ice nuclei (IN), subgrid temperature formulas and the number concentration of sulfate particles participating in homogeneous freezing, while simulated ice water content is insensitive to these perturbations. 1% to 10% dust particles serving as heterogeneous IN is 20 found to produce ice supersaturaiton in better agreement with observations. Introducing a subgrid temperature perturbation based on long-term aircraft observations of meso-scale motion produces a better hemispheric contrast in ice supersaturation compared to observations. Heterogeneous IN from dust particles significantly alter the net radiative fluxes at the top of atmosphere (TOA) (-0.24 to -1.59 W m-2) with a significant clear-sky longwave component (0.01 to -0.55 W m-2). Different cirrus treatments significantly perturb the net TOA anthropogenic aerosol forcing from -1.21 W m-2 to -1.54 W m-2, with a standard deviation of 0.10 W m-2. Aerosol effects on cirrus clouds exert an even larger impact on the atmospheric componentmore » of the radiative fluxes (two or three times the changes in the TOA radiative fluxes) and therefore on the hydrology cycle through the fast atmosphere response. This points to the urgent need to quantify aerosol effects on cirrus clouds through ice nucleation and how these further affect the hydrological cycle.« less
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Journal Article
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Journal Name: Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems, 6(3):756-776
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
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Country of Publication:
United States