An evaluation and improvement of microphysical parameterization from a two-moment cloud microphysics scheme and the Southwest Monsoon Experiment (SoWMEX)/Terrain-influenced Monsoon Rainfall Experiment (TiMREX) observations

Wenhua Gao, Chung Hsiung Sui, Tai Chi Chen Wang, Wei Yu Chang

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Abstract

This study evaluates the simulated cloud properties, especially the simulated raindrop size distribution, by the Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences bulk microphysics scheme (CAMS BMS) and two other two-moment microphysics schemes (Morrison and WDM6) in the Weather Research and Forecasting model (WRF v3.1). Measurements from a mesoscale convective system that occurred on 14 June 2008 during the Southwest Monsoon Experiment (SoWMEX) and Terrain-influenced Monsoon Rainfall Experiment (TiMREX) are used. The model reflectivity (ZH), differential reflectivity (ZDR), and microwave brightness temperature (TB) are compared with the corresponding observations by the S band dual-polarization Doppler radar (S-Pol) and the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) Microwave Imager (TMI). Results show that the simulated ZDR, which is sensitive to the drop size distribution (DSD) of raindrops, from the original CAMS BMS and Morrison schemes are larger than those from the S-Pol observations. On the other hand, the simulated ZDR values from the WDM6 scheme are smaller than the radar observations. To improve the model results, modifications are made by controlling the intercept parameter of raindrop DSD and by increasing the raindrop breakup rates in the original CAMS BMS scheme. The modifications reduce the raindrop size and consequently increase the rain evaporation rate. The improved simulations of ZH and ZDR indicate that the modified CAMS BMS scheme adequately simulates the amount and size of liquid hydrometeors. Moreover, the simulated brightness temperatures at liquid water absorption frequency and the simulated surface precipitation rates are also significantly improved by using the modified CAMS BMS scheme.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberD19101
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research E: Planets
Volume116
Issue number19
DOIs
StatePublished - 2011

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