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Boundary Layer Verification ECMWF training course May 2012 Maike Ahlgrimm.

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Presentation on theme: "Boundary Layer Verification ECMWF training course May 2012 Maike Ahlgrimm."— Presentation transcript:

1 Boundary Layer Verification ECMWF training course May 2012 Maike Ahlgrimm

2 What does the BL parameterization do? Attempts to integrate effects of small scale turbulent motion on prognostic variables at grid resolution. Turbulence transports temperature, moisture and momentum (+tracers). Ultimate goal: correct model output

3 Which aspect of the BL can we evaluate? 1.2m temperature/humidity 2.Depth of BL 3.Diurnal variability of BL height 4.Structure of BL (temperature, moisture, velocity profiles) 5.Turbulent transport within BL 6.Boundaries: entrainment, surface fluxes, clouds etc. large scale small scale Chandra et al. 2010

4 Part 1 Depth of the boundary layer

5 Boundary Layer Height from Radiosondes Three methods: Heffter (1980) (1) Liu and Liang Method (2010) (1+) Richardson number method (2) Figure: Martin Köhler normalized BL height How to define the BL top? 1)Heat and moisture well-mixed in BL (convective BL) 2)Flow transitions from turbulent to laminar at BL top (any BL) Must apply same method to observations and model data for equitable comparison!

6 Heffter method to determine PBL height Potential temperature gradient exceeds K/m Pot. temperature change across inversion layer exceeds 2K Potential temperature Potential temperature gradient Sivaraman et al., 2012, ASR STM poster presentation Note: Works on convective BL only May detect more than one layer Detection is subject to smoothing applied to data

7 Liu and Liang method Liu and Liang, 2010 First, determine which type of BL is present, based on Θ difference between two near-surface levels

8 Liu and Liang method: convective BL Liu and Liang, 2010 For convective and neutral cases: Lift parcel adiabatically from surface to neutral buoyancy (i.e. same environmental Θ as parcel), and Θ gradient exceeds minimum value (similar in concept to Heffter). Parameters δ s, δ u and critical Θ gradient are empirical numbers, differing for ocean and land.

9 Liu and Liang method: stable BL Liu and Liang, 2010 Stable case: Search for a minimum in θ gradient (top of bulk stable layer). If wind profile indicates presence of a low-level jet, assign level of jet nose as PBL height if it is below# the bulk layer top. Advantage: Method can be applied to all profiles, not just convective cases.

10 Turbulent kinetic energy equation buoyancy production/ consumption shear production turbulent transport pressure correlation dissipation

11 Richardson number-based approach Richardson number defined as: flow is turbulent if Ri is negative flow is laminar if Ri above critical value calculate Ri for model/radiosonde profile and define BL height as level where Ri exceeds critical number buoyancy production/consumption shear production (usually negative) Ri= Problem: defined only in turbulent air! Flux Richardson number

12 Gradient Richardson number Alternative: relate turbulent fluxes to vertical gradients (K- theory) flux Richardson numbergradient Richardson number Remaining problem: We dont have local vertical gradients in model

13 Bulk Richardson number Solution: use discrete (bulk) gradients: This approach is used in the IFS for the diagnostic BLH in IFS. It is currently tuned to best agree with parameterization based BL height Limitations: Values for critical Ri based on lab experiment, but were using bulk approximation (smoothing gradients), so critical Ri will be different from lab Subject to smoothing/resolution of profile Some versions give excess energy to buoyant parcel based on sensible heat flux – not reliable field, and often not available from observations

14 How-to recipe Need T, u,v,q,z and some constants Define conserved variable, e.g. virtual dry static energy: Apply smoothing in the vertical if necessary Starting at lowest model level, calculate Ri number, adding an excess to the dse to make up for missing surface fluxes Iterate, until Ri exceeds critical level (e.g. 0.25) Assign height of nearest layer as BL top height

15 Example: dry convective boundary layer NW Africa 2K excess 1K excess Theta [K] profiles shifted Figures: Martin Köhler

16 Example: Inversion-topped BL Inversion capped BLs dominate in the subtropical oceanic regions Identify height of jump across inversion EPIC, October 2001 southeast Pacific

17 Limitations of sonde measurements Sonde measurements are limited to populated areas Depend on someone to launch them (cost) Model grid box averages are compared to point measurements (representativity error)

18 Took many years to compile this map Neiburger et al. 1961

19 Calipso tracks Arabic peninsula - daytime CALIPSO tracks

20 BL from lidar how-to Easiest: use level 2 product (GLAS/CALIPSO) Algorithm searches from the ground up for significant drop in backscatter signal Align model observations in time and space with satellite track and compare directly, or compare statistics surface return backscatter from BL aerosol molecular backscatter Figure: GLAS ATBD

21 Example: Lidar-derived BL depth from GLAS Only 50 days of data yield a much more comprehensive picture than Neiburgers map. Ahlgrimm & Randall, 2006

22 GLAS - ECMWF BLH comparison Palm et al GLAS ECMWF m shallow in model, patterns good

23 Limitations to this method Definition of BL top is tied to aerosol concentration - will pick residual layer Does not work well for cloudy conditions (excluding BL clouds), or when elevated aerosol layers are present Overpasses only twice daily, same local time Difficult to monitor given location

24 The case of marine stratocumulus Well mixed convective layer underneath strong inversion Are clouds part of the BL? As Sc transition to trade cumulus, where is the BL top?

25 Stratocumulus cloud top height Model underestimates Sc top height Köhler et al Hannay et al EPIC SEP obs IFS

26 Part 2 Diurnal cycle of boundary layer height

27 Diurnal cycle of convective BL from radiosonde Example: stratocumulus-topped marine BL in the south-east Pacific: East Pacific Investigation of Climate (EPIC), 2001 Clear diurnal cycle of ~200m with minimum in early afternoon, maximum during early morning. Bretherton et al. 2004, BAMS

28 Diurnal cycle from CALIPSO

29 Part 3 Turbulent transport

30 Flux towers: measuring BL fluxes in-situ Example: Cabauw, 213m mast obtain measurements of roughness length, drag coefficients etc. KNMI webpage

31 Bomex: trade cumulus regime Stevens et al Model fluxes via LES, constrain LES results with observations

32 Bomex - DualM Dual Mass Flux parameterization - example of statistical scheme mixing K-diffusion and mass flux approach Updraft and environmental properties are described by PDFs, based on LES Need to evaluate PDFs! Neggers et al. 2009

33 Turbulent characteristics: humidity Raman lidar provides high resolution (in time and space) water vapor observations Plot: Franz Berger (DWD)

34 Turbulent characteristics: vertical motion Observations from mm-wavelength cloud radar at ARM SGP, using insects as scatterers. Chandra et al local time reflectivity doppler velocity red dots: ceilometer cloud base

35 Turbulent characteristics: vertical motion Variance and skewness statistics in the convective BL (cloud free) from four summer seasons at ARM SGP Chandra et al. 2010

36 Characterizing the boundary layer Skewness of vertical velocity distribution from doppler lidar distinguishes surface-driven vs. cloud-top driven turbulence Hogan et al. 2009

37 Part 4 Stable Boundary Layer

38 10m wind biases compared to synop observations OLD No snow NEW No snow Vegetation type Bias+st dev U10m Irina Sandu

39 OLD NEW 10m wind biases compared to synop observations Irina Sandu

40 T2m (new-old) 00 UTC absolute error T2m (new-old) Irina Sandu

41 Part 5 Boundaries

42 Forcing BL turbulence driven through surface fluxes, or radiative cooling at cloud top. Check: albedo, soil moisture, roughness length, clouds BL top entrainment rate: important but elusive quantity

43 Entrainment rate - DYCOMS II Example: DYCOMS II - estimate entrainment velocity mixed layer concept: Stevens et al. 2003

44 Summary & Considerations What parameter do you want to verify? What observations are most suitable? Define parameter in model and observations in as equitable and objective a manner as possible. Compare! Are your results representative? How do model errors relate to parameterization?

45 References (in no particular order) Neiburger et al.,1961: The Inversion Over the Eastern North Pacific Ocean Bretherton et al., 2004: The EPIC Stratocumulus Study, BAMS Stevens et al., 2001: Simulations of trade wind cumuli under a strong inversion, J. Atmos. Sci. Stevens et al., 2003: Dynamics and Chemistry of Marine Stratocumulus - DYCOMS II, BAMS Chandra, A., P. Kollias, S. Giangrande, and S. Klein: Long-term Observations of the Convective Boundary Layer Using Insect Radar Returns at the SGP ARM Climate Research Facility, J. Climate, 23, 5699–5714. Hannay et al., 2009: Evaluation of forecasted southeast Pacific stratocumulus in the NCAR, GFDL, and ECMWF models. J. Climate Hogan et al, 2009: Vertical velocity variance and skewness in clear and cloud- topped boundary layers as revealed by Doppler lidar, QJRMS, 135, 635–643. Köhler et al. 2011: Unified treatment of dry convective and stratocumulus- topped boundary layers in the ECMWF model, QJRMS,137, 43–57. Ahlgrimm & Randall, 2006: Diagnosing monthly mean boundary layer properties from reanalysis data using a bulk boundary layer model. JAS Neggers, 2009: A dual mass flux framework for boundary layer convection. Part II: Clouds. JAS

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