Exploring Key Physics in Modeling Large-scale Tropical Deep Convection
Dr. Xianan Jiang
Joint Institute for Regional Earth System Science & Engineering, University of California, Los Angeles, California, USA
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, California, USA
Tropical deep convection exhibits multi-scale organizations from scattered cumuli, meso-scale complex, to synoptic waves, and the planetary-scale Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO). While the large-scale MJO exerts tremendous influences on global climate and extreme weather systems, our current general circulation models (GCMs) exhibit rather limited capability in representing this prominent tropical variability mode. Also, the fundamental physics of the MJO are still elusive. Given the central role of the diabatic heating and moist processes for prevailing MJO theories and demands for reducing the model deficiencies in simulating the MJO, a global model inter-comparison project on physical processes and vertical structure of the MJO was organized through a joint effort by the WCRP-WWRP/THORPEX YOTC MJO Task Force and GEWEX GASS Program. In this talk, this MJO model comparison project will be briefly introduced with a main focus on the climate simulation component. Particularly, by analyzing 27 participating climate models, plausible key processes responsible for realistic MJO simulations, including its amplitude and propagation, are explored based on moist static energy budget analyses. Several critical issues in modeling and understanding the MJO, including potential applications of satellite observations, will be discussed.
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