Local coupling (LoCo) vs. large-scale coupled (LsCo) land-atmosphere interactions in idealized experiments

Monday, 15 December 2014: 8:20 AM
Pierre Gentine1, Benjamin R Lintner2, Kirsten Lynn Findell3, Nicolas Rochetin4, Adam H Sobel1 and Usama M Anber1, (1)Columbia University, New York, NY, United States, (2)Rutgers, New Brunswick, NJ, United States, (3)NOAA, Princeton, NJ, United States, (4)Columbia University in the City of New York, New York, NY, United States
We will present two idealized epxeriments/methodologies to investigate local (LoCo) and large-scale (LsCo) coupling between the surface and the atmsophere: the contiental Radiative-Convective Equilibrium (RCE) and the continental Weak Temperature Gradient (WTG). The RCE defines an equilibrium state of coupling between the surafce and the atmosphere isolated from any large-scale dependence, which were investigated within the single column model of the Laboratoire de Meteorologie Dynamique (LMD) coupled to a simple bucket land model. This studies emphasizes the role of low-level cloud and the diurnal cylce of the boundary layer on the final state of the system. In the WTG we investigate the coupling between the surface and the atmosphere during the dry and wet season of the Amazon with the WRF model coupled to the NOAH land-surface model. Large-scale coupling is obtained with the WTG. The dry and wet season demonstrate very fundamental behavior: in the dry season deep convection is generated by radiative cooling in the higher troposhere and is disconnected from the surface. In the wet season the coupling between the surface and the atmosphere is much tighter. We suggest that the WTG is a powerful tool to investigate the coupling between the surface and the atmosphere, which solves two major issues: the limited resolution of convection in GCMs and the lack of large-scale coupling in CRM. Later investigation will look at the effect of deforestation, water table and distance from the ocean.