Annual Progress Report

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Nov 3, 2013 (4 years and 8 months ago)



Annual Progress Report

CLEO 2011


1.4 Climate model development

Project leader

Michael Kahnert, SMHI, Folkborgsvägen 1, 60176 Norrköping;

General Objective:

The main obj
ective of this study is to develop a 3D aerosol
cloud model to investigate the indirect
effect of aerosols on a regional scale. During the past year, the work mainly focussed on the
development and validation of the model


description of activities

During the period Aug 2010

Dec 2011, the research work focussed on the following two aspects:


Incorporation of cloud activation model into the MATCH
SALSA framework


Adaptations in RCA for offline ingestion of the cloud droplet number concentrations
(CDNC) from the cloud activation model.

Incorporation of cloud activation model into the MATCH
SALSA framework

The Multiple
scale Atmospheric Transport and Chemistry (MATCH) model is the chemistry
transport model that accounts for transport, chemical tra
nsformation and deposition of chemical
tracers in the atmosphere based on the emissions. MATCH is coupled to the aerosol dynamic
model, SALSA that considers the physical processes such as nucleation of particles from gas
phase, growth of particles by conde
nsation and coagulation, thereby computes the size
distribution, number concentration and chemical composition of the aerosol species in the different
size classes. This information is coupled to a cloud activation model that computes the CDNC
based on the

prognostic parameterization of Abdul
Razzak and Ghan (2002). By this scheme,
CDNCs are defined as the fraction of particles with radius larger than the critical radius of
activation at the time of maximum supersaturation. This means that, the efficiency o
f an aerosol
particle to be converted to cloud droplet depends on the size and chemical composition of the
particle as well as the updraft velocity and supersaturation of the air parcel. A full
fledged working
version of the MATCH
SALSA model coupled to th
e cloud model has been developed and
presented in the appendix are some results. Fig. 1 shows the seasonal means of CDNC in cm

the entire cloud over Europe. Fig.2 shows joint histograms of CDNC and height in hPa over the
Meditteranean region. It can b
e seen that the majority of the CDNC values are less than 500 cm
but, values reaches as high as 1500 cm
. It also shows an interesting seasonality of PDFs of
CDNC. For example, the maximum CDNC is observed in 875 and 700 hPa level. There are
however a
number of features that are currently being investigated:


When compared to previous studies (Barahona et al., 2011; Bennartz, 2007), CDNCs, in
general, seems to be over
estimated by about 20


Cloud droplets are seen (fig.2) at very low pressure levels
upto about 200 hPa. Although
supercooled liquid water has been observed well below freezing heights up to about
such high vertical location of supercooled liquid water is highly unrealistic.


Spatial distribution of CDNC during spring closely follows
topography and the land sea
contrast seems to be stronger than expected.

Adaptations in RCA for offline ingestion of the CDNCs from the cloud activation model.

The CDNCs obtained are passed to the regional climate model, RCA4 that w
ould give us
information on cloud microphysical properties such as cloud effective radii, cloud liquid water path
as well as the radiative fluxes. The total cloud particles in RCA4 were assigned fixed numbers
over the whole domain based on whether they are

cold, oceanic or warm, continental that are
further used in the autoconversion process (conversion of cloud droplet to rain). Also, the
calculation of the effective radius of cloud droplets over land and ocean were based on these
constant CDNC numbers. Th
ese are now replaced by the 3D CDNC fields obtained from the cloud
activation model. The model is already set up. This would help us give an estimate of the indirect
aerosol forcing on a regional scale.


Razzak, H. and Ghan, S, J.: A p
arameterization of aerosol activation 3. Sectional representation,
J. Geophys.
, 4026, 2002.

Bennartz, R.: Global assessment of marine boundary layer cloud droplet number concentration from satellite,
J. Geophys.
, D02201, 2007.

D., Sotiropoulou, R., Nenes, A.: Global distribution of cloud droplet number concentration, autoconversion rate,
and aerosol indirect effect under diabatic droplet activation,
J. Geophys. Res.,


D09203, 2011.

Deliverables 2011

D.1.4.1: Full
dged version of MATCH
SALSA coupled to cloud activation model is done as
planned (Aug 2010
July 2011)

D.1.4.2: 1

order coupling between MATCH and RCA model (Aug 2011
present): The technical
model development is already done and tests will be carried out
during the next couple of months.

Additional staff involved in project

Manu Anna Thomas

operation outside CLEO:

MACII project

Reports and publications:


Oral presentations:



Fig.1: Seasonal means of CDNC (cm
) in
the entire cloud over Europe.

Fig. 2: Joint histogram of CDNC and height in hPa over the Meditteranean region.