Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 7, 14675-14706, 2007
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This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP). Please refer to the corresponding final paper in ACP.
Introduction of prognostic rain in ECHAM5: design and Single Column Model simulations
R. Posselt and U. Lohmann
Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science, ETH Zurich, Universitaetsstrasse 16, 8092 Zurich, Switzerland

Abstract. Prognostic equations for the rain mass mixing ratio and the rain drop number concentration are introduced into the large-scale cloud microphysics parameterization of the ECHAM5 general circulation model (ECHAM5-RAIN). For this a rain flux from one level to the next with the appropriate fall speed is introduced. This maintains rain water in the atmosphere to be available for the next time step. Rain formation in ECHAM5-RAIN is, therefore, less dependent on the autoconversion rate than the standard ECHAM5 but shifts the emphasis towards the accretion rates in accordance with observations. ECHAM5-RAIN is tested and evaluated with two cases: the continental mid-latitude ARM Cloud IOP (shallow frontal cloud case – March 2000) and EPIC (a marine stratocumulus study – October 2001). The prognostic equations for rain hardly affect the amount and timing of precipitation at the surface in different Single Column Model (SCM) simulations for heavy precipitating clouds because heavy rain depends mainly on the large-scale forcing. In case of thin, drizzling clouds (i.e., stratocumulus), an increase in surface precipitation is caused by more sub-time steps used in the prognostic rain scheme until convergence is reached. Cloud microphysical quantities, such as liquid and rain water, are more sensitive to the number of sub-time steps for light precipitation. This results from the decreasing autoconversion rate and increasing accretion rate.

Citation: Posselt, R. and Lohmann, U.: Introduction of prognostic rain in ECHAM5: design and Single Column Model simulations, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 7, 14675-14706, doi:10.5194/acpd-7-14675-2007, 2007.
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