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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-1056
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-1056
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 20 Jan 2020

Submitted as: research article | 20 Jan 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Impacts of aerosol-radiation interaction on meteorological forecast over northern China by offline coupling the WRF-Chem simulated AOD into WRF: a case study during a heavy pollution event

Yang Yang1, Min Chen1, Xiujuan Zhao1, Dan Chen1, Shuiyong Fan1, and Shaukat Ali2 Yang Yang et al.
  • 1Institute of Urban Meteorology, China Meteorological Administration, Beijing 100089, China
  • 2Global Change Impact Studies Centre, Ministry of Climate Change, Islamabad 44000, Pakistan

Abstract. To facilitate the future inclusion of aerosol-radiation interactions in the regional operational Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) system – RMAPS-ST (adapted from Weather Research and Forecasting, WRF) at the Institute of Urban Meteorology (IUM), China Meteorological Administration (CMA), the impacts of aerosol-radiation interactions on the forecast of surface radiation and meteorological parameters during a heavy pollution event (December 6th–10th, 2015) over northern China were investigated. The aerosol information was simulated by RMAPS-Chem (adapted from WRF model coupled with Chemistry, WRF-Chem) and then offline-coupled into Rapid Radiative Transfer Model for General Circulation Models (RRTMG) radiation scheme of WRF to enable the aerosol-radiation feedback in the forecast. To ensure the accuracy of high-frequent (hourly) updated aerosol optical depth (AOD) field, the temporal variations of simulated AOD at 550 nm were evaluated against satellite and in-situ observations, which showed great consistency. Further comparison of PM2.5 with in-situ observation showed WRF-Chem reasonably captured the PM2.5 field in terms of spatial distribution and magnitude, with the correlation coefficients of 0.85, 0.89 and 0.76 at Beijing, Shijiazhuang and Tianjin, respectively. Forecasts with/without the hourly aerosol information were conducted further, and the differences of surface radiation, energy budget, and meteorological parameters were evaluated against surface and sounding observations. The offline-coupling simulation (with aerosol-radiation interaction active) showed a remarkable decrease of downward shortwave (SW) radiation reaching surface, thus helping to reduce the overestimated SW radiation during daytime. The simulated surface radiation budget was also improved, with the biases of net surface radiation decreased by 85.3 %, 50.0 %, 35.4 %, and 44.1 % during daytime at Beijing, Tianjin, Taiyuan and Jinan respectively, accompanied by the reduction of sensible (16.1 W m−2, 18.5 %) and latent (6.8 W m−2, 13.4 %) heat fluxes emitted by the surface at noon-time. In addition, the cooling of 2-m temperature (~ 0.40 °C) and the decrease of horizontal wind speed near surface (~ 0.08 m s−1) caused by the aerosol-radiation interaction over northern China helped to reduce the bias by ~ 73.9 % and ~ 7.8 % respectively, particularly during daytime. Further comparisons indicated that the simulation implemented AOD could better capture the vertical structure of atmospheric wind. Accompanied with the lower planetary boundary layer and the increased atmospheric stability, both U and V wind at 850 hPa showed the convergence which were unfavorable for pollutants dispersion. Since RMPAS-ST provides meteorological initial condition for RMPS-Chem, the changes of meteorology introduced by aerosol-radiation interaction would routinely impact the simulations of pollutants. These results demonstrated the profound influence of aerosol-radiation interactions on the improvement of predictive accuracy and the potential prospects to offline couple near-real-time aerosol information in regional RMAPS-ST NWP in northern China.

Yang Yang et al.

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Yang Yang et al.

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Short summary
To facilitate the future inclusion of aerosol-radiation interactions in the regional operational Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) system – RMAPS-ST (adapted from Weather Research and Forecasting, WRF) at the Institute of Urban Meteorology (IUM), China Meteorological Administration (CMA), the impacts of aerosol-radiation interactions on the forecast of surface radiation and meteorological parameters during a heavy pollution event (December 6th–10th, 2015) over northern China were investigated.
To facilitate the future inclusion of aerosol-radiation interactions in the regional operational...
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