Impacts from Time-dependent Freezing of Rain and Wet Hail on Deep Convection Simulated by a Cloud Model with Spectral Bin Microphysics

Monday, 15 December 2014: 4:30 PM
Vaughan T Phillips1, Alexander Khain2, Eyal Ilotoviz2 and Nir BenMoshe2, (1)Lund University, Lund, Sweden, (2)Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel
Any hydrometeor containing some supercooled liquid can only freeze it as fast as latent heat is dissipated to the ambient air. Consequently, at sub-zero temperatures any given particle in a cloud can contain both ice and liquid water. Wet growth of hail occurs when supercooled cloud-liquid is accreted faster than it can freeze immediately on impact. Equally, raindrops in clear air can take up to a few mins to freeze.

A new theory of time-dependent freezing is proposed in this presentation. First, wet growth of hail is represented by treating inhomogeneities of liquid coverage and temperature over the surface of the particle. Radial heat fluxes from the sponge layer through the liquid skin to the air are predicted, as well as heat fluxes between its wet and dry parts. Gradual internal freezing of liquid that soaks the interior of the hail or graupel particle during dry growth (‘riming’) is represented. The microphysical recycling with alternating episodes of wet and dry growth is predicted. Second, the time-dependent process of raindrop freezing is represented by including thermodynamic effects from accretion of cloud-liquid and -ice. Freezing drops larger than about 0.1 mm are represented as a new microphysical species in a cloud model with spectral bin microphysics. The freezing drops consist of interior water covered by ice initially. Possibilities of both dry and wet growth of freezing drops are represented.

Schemes of time-dependent freezing for rain and wet growth of hail and graupel were implemented in a spectral bin microphysics cloud model. The model predicted that accretion of liquid produces giant freezing drops of 0.5-2 cm in diameter, due to downdraft-updraft recirculation and wet growth of freezing drops. Appreciable contents of freezing drops reach a height level of 7 km (-30 degC) in the simulated storm. The critical diameter separating wet and dry growth regimes is predicted to increase with height for freezing drops. It is more vertically uniform for hail.

A sensitivity test with the cloud model shows that time-dependent freezing delays formation of the first hail. Later in the mature stage of the storm, it boosts hail amounts. Convection is invigorated. Hail and freezing drops are upwelled to higher levels, and hail grows to sizes up to twice as large, than without time-dependent freezing.