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  • American Meteorological Society  (258)
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  • 1
    Publication Date: 2019-02-08
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2018. This article is posted here by permission of American Meteorological Society for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Climate 31 (2018): 7565-7581, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-18-0108.1.
    Description: There is mounting evidence that the width of the tropics has increased over the last few decades, but there are large differences in reported expansion rates. This is, likely, in part due to the wide variety of metrics that have been used to define the tropical width. Here we perform a systematic investigation into the relationship among nine metrics of the zonal-mean tropical width using preindustrial control and abrupt quadrupling of CO2 simulations from a suite of coupled climate models. It is shown that the latitudes of the edge of the Hadley cell, the midlatitude eddy-driven jet, the edge of the subtropical dry zones, and the Southern Hemisphere subtropical high covary interannually and exhibit similar long-term responses to a quadrupling of CO2. However, metrics based on the outgoing longwave radiation, the position of the subtropical jet, the break in the tropopause, and the Northern Hemisphere subtropical high have very weak covariations with the above metrics and/or respond differently to increases in CO2 and thus are not good indicators of the expansion of the Hadley cell or subtropical dry zone. The differing variability and responses to increases in CO2 among metrics highlights that care is needed when choosing metrics for studies of the width of the tropics and that it is important to make sure the metric used is appropriate for the specific phenomena and impacts being examined.
    Description: DW acknowledges support from NSF AGS-1403676.
    Description: 2019-02-08
    Keywords: Hadley circulation ; Hydrologic cycle ; Meridional overturning circulation
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
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  • 2
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    American Meteorological Society
    In:  Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 79 (10). pp. 2033-2058.
    Publication Date: 2016-09-07
    Description: In the autumn of 1996 the field component of an experiment designed to observe water mass transformation began in the Labrador Sea. Intense observations of ocean convection were taken in the following two winters. The purpose of the experiment was, by a combination of meteorological and oceanographic field observations, laboratory studies, theory, and modeling, to improve understanding of the convective process in the ocean and its representation in models. The dataset that has been gathered far exceeds previous efforts to observe the convective process anywhere in the ocean, both in its scope and range of techniques deployed. Combined with a comprehensive set of meteorological and air-sea flux measurements, it is giving unprecedented insights into the dynamics and thermodynamics of a closely coupled, semienclosed system known to have direct influence on the processes that control global climate.
    Type: Article , PeerReviewed
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2016-09-07
    Description: The interaction of clouds with solar and terrestrial radiation is one of the most important topics of climate research. In recent years it has been recognized that only a full three-dimensional (3D) treatment of this interaction can provide answers to many climate and remote sensing problems, leading to the worldwide development of numerous 3D radiative transfer (RT) codes. The international Intercomparison of 3D Radiation Codes (I3RC), described in this paper, sprung from the natural need to compare the performance of these 3D RT codes used in a variety of current scientific work in the atmospheric sciences. I3RC supports intercomparison and development of both exact and approximate 3D methods in its effort to 1) understand and document the errors/limits of 3D algorithms and their sources; 2) provide “baseline” cases for future code development for 3D radiation; 3) promote sharing and production of 3D radiative tools; 4) derive guidelines for 3D radiative tool selection; and 5) improve atmospheric science education in 3D RT. Results from the two completed phases of I3RC have been presented in two workshops and are expected to guide improvements in both remote sensing and radiative energy budget calculations in cloudy atmospheres.
    Type: Article , PeerReviewed
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  • 4
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    American Meteorological Society
    In:  Journal of Physical Oceanography, 29 . pp. 2065-2098.
    Publication Date: 2018-04-06
    Description: A 12-month mooring record (May 1994–June 1995), together with accompanying PALACE float data, is used to describe an annual cycle of deep convection and restratification in the Labrador Sea. The mooring is located at 56.75°N, 52.5°W, near the former site of Ocean Weather Station Bravo, in water of 3500 m depth. This is a pilot experiment for climate monitoring, and also for studies of deep-convection dynamics. Mooring measurements include temperature (T), salinity (S), horizontal and vertical velocity, and acoustic measurement of surface winds. The floats made weekly temperature–salinity profiles between their drift level (near 1500 m) and the surface. With moderately strong cooling to the atmosphere (300 W m−2 averaged from November to March), wintertime convection penetrated from the surface to about 1750 m, overcoming the stabilizing effect of upper-ocean low-salinity water. The water column restratifies rapidly after brief vertical homogenization (in potential density, salinity, and potential temperature). Both the rapid restratification and the energetic high-frequency variations of T and S observed at the mooring are suggestive of a convection depth that varies greatly with location. Lateral variations in T and S exist down to very small scales, and these remnants of convection decay (with e-folding time 170 day) after convection ceases. Lateral variability at the scale of 100 km is verified by PALACE profiles. The Eulerian mooring effectively samples the convection in a mesoscale region of ocean as eddies sweep past it; the Lagrangian PALACE floats are complementary in sampling the geography of deep convection more widely. This laterally variable convection leaves the water column with significant vertical gradients most of the year. Convection followed by lateral mixing gives vertical salinity profiles the (misleading) appearance that a one-dimensional diffusive process is fluxing freshwater downward. During spring, summer, and fall the salinity, temperature, and buoyancy rise steadily with time throughout most of the water column. This is likely the result of mixing with the encircling boundary currents, compensating for the escape of Labrador Sea Water from the region. Low-salinity water mixes into the gyre only near the surface. The water-column heat balance is in satisfactory agreement with meteorological assimilation models. Directly observed subsurface calorimetry may be the more reliable indication of the annual-mean air–sea heat flux. Acoustic instrumentation on the mooring gave a surprisingly good time series of the vector surface wind. The three-dimensional velocity field consists of convective plumes of width 200 to 1000 m, vertical velocities of 2 to 8 cm s−1, and Rossby numbers of order unity, embedded in stronger (20 cm s−1) lateral currents associated with mesoscale eddies. Horizontal currents with timescales of several days to several months are strongly barotropic. They are suddenly energized as convection reaches great depth in early March, and develop toward a barotropic state, as also seen in models of convectively driven geostrophic turbulence in a weakly stratified, high-latitude ocean. Currents decay through the summer and autumn, apart from some persistent isolated eddies. These coherent, isolated, cold anticyclones carry cores of pure convected water long after the end of winter. Boundary currents nearby interact with the Labrador Sea gyre and provide an additional source of eddies in the interior Labrador Sea. An earlier study of the pulsation of the boundary currents is supported by observations of sudden ejection of floats from the central gyre into the boundary currents (and sudden ingestion of boundary current floats into the gyre interior), in what may be a mechanism for exchange between Labrador Sea Water and the World Ocean.
    Type: Article , PeerReviewed
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2011. This article is posted here by permission of American Meteorological Society for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Climate 24 (2011): 2648–2665, doi:10.1175/2010JCLI3435.1.
    Description: North Pacific Subtropical Mode Water (NPSTMW) is an essential feature of the North Pacific subtropical gyre imparting significant influence on regional SST evolution on seasonal and longer time scales and, as such, is an important component of basin-scale North Pacific climate variability. This study examines the seasonal-to-interannual variability of NPSTMW, the physical processes responsible for this variability, and the connections between NPSTMW and basin-scale climate signals using an eddy-permitting 1979–2006 ocean simulation made available by the Estimating the Circulation and Climate of the Ocean, Phase II (ECCO2). The monthly mean seasonal cycle of NPSTMW in the simulation exhibits three distinct phases: (i) formation during November–March, (ii) isolation during March–June, and (iii) dissipation during June–November—each corresponding to significant changes in upper-ocean structure. An interannual signal is also evident in NPSTMW volume and other characteristic properties with volume minima occurring in 1979, 1988, and 1999. This volume variability is correlated with the Pacific decadal oscillation (PDO) with zero time lag. Further analyses demonstrate the connection of NPSTMW to the basin-scale ocean circulation. With this, modulations of upper-ocean structure driven by the varying strength and position of the westerlies as well as the regional air–sea heat flux pattern are seen to contribute to the variability of NPSTMW volume on interannual time scales.
    Description: Support for this research was provided by the Partnership for Advancing Interdisciplinary Modeling (PARADIGM), a National Ocean Partnership Program and by a NASA Modeling, Analysis, and the Prediction (MAP) project called Estimating the Circulation and Climate of the Ocean, Phase II (ECCO2).
    Keywords: Seasonal variability ; Interannual variability ; North Pacific Ocean ; Subtropics ; Climate variability ; Pacific decadal oscillation
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
    Type: Article
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  • 6
    Publication Date: 2017-01-04
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2011. This article is posted here by permission of American Meteorological Society for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Physical Oceanography 41 (2011): 2223–2241, doi:10.1175/2011JPO4344.1.
    Description: Results are presented from an observational study of stratified, turbulent flow in the bottom boundary layer on the outer southeast Florida shelf. Measurements of momentum and heat fluxes were made using an array of acoustic Doppler velocimeters and fast-response temperature sensors in the bottom 3 m over a rough reef slope. Direct estimates of flux Richardson number Rf confirm previous laboratory, numerical, and observational work, which find mixing efficiency not to be a constant but rather to vary with Frt, Reb, and Rig. These results depart from previous observations in that the highest levels of mixing efficiency occur for Frt 〈 1, suggesting that efficient mixing can also happen in regions of buoyancy-controlled turbulence. Generally, the authors find that turbulence in the reef bottom boundary layer is highly variable in time and modified by near-bed flow, shear, and stratification driven by shoaling internal waves.
    Description: Funding was provided by grants from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Undersea Research Program, National Science Foundation Grants OCE-0622967 and OCE- 0824972 to SGM, and the Singapore Stanford Program. Kristen Davis was supported by a National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship and an ARCS Foundation Fellowship.
    Keywords: Boundary layer ; Turbulence ; Bottom currents ; Mixing ; Internal waves
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
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  • 7
    Publication Date: 2018-05-07
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2012. This article is posted here by permission of American Meteorological Society for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society 93 (2012): 1547–1566, doi:10.1175/BAMS-D-11-00201.1.
    Description: The Geostationary Coastal and Air Pollution Events (GEO-CAPE) mission was recommended by the National Research Council's (NRC's) Earth Science Decadal Survey to measure tropospheric trace gases and aerosols and coastal ocean phytoplankton, water quality, and biogeochemistry from geostationary orbit, providing continuous observations within the field of view. To fulfill the mandate and address the challenge put forth by the NRC, two GEO-CAPE Science Working Groups (SWGs), representing the atmospheric composition and ocean color disciplines, have developed realistic science objectives using input drawn from several community workshops. The GEO-CAPE mission will take advantage of this revolutionary advance in temporal frequency for both of these disciplines. Multiple observations per day are required to explore the physical, chemical, and dynamical processes that determine tropospheric composition and air quality over spatial scales ranging from urban to continental, and over temporal scales ranging from diurnal to seasonal. Likewise, high-frequency satellite observations are critical to studying and quantifying biological, chemical, and physical processes within the coastal ocean. These observations are to be achieved from a vantage point near 95°–100°W, providing a complete view of North America as well as the adjacent oceans. The SWGs have also endorsed the concept of phased implementation using commercial satellites to reduce mission risk and cost. GEO-CAPE will join the global constellation of geostationary atmospheric chemistry and coastal ocean color sensors planned to be in orbit in the 2020 time frame.
    Description: Funding for GEO-CAPE definition activities is provided by the Earth Science Division of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
    Description: 2013-04-01
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
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  • 8
    Publication Date: 2019-01-13
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2018. This article is posted here by permission of American Meteorological Society for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Physical Oceanography 48 (2018): 1555-1566, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-17-0231.1.
    Description: A primary challenge in modeling flow over shallow coral reefs is accurately characterizing the bottom drag. Previous studies over continental shelves and sandy beaches suggest surface gravity waves should enhance the drag on the circulation over coral reefs. The influence of surface gravity waves on drag over four platform reefs in the Red Sea is examined using observations from 6-month deployments of current and pressure sensors burst sampling at 1Hz for 4–5min. Depth-average current fluctuations U0 within each burst are dominated by wave orbital velocities uw that account for 80%–90%of the burst variance and have a magnitude of order 10 cm s21, similar to the lower-frequency depth-average current Uavg. Previous studies have shown that the cross-reef bottom stress balances the pressure gradient over these reefs. A bottom stress estimate that neglects the waves (rCdaUavgjUavgj, where r is water density and Cda is a drag coefficient) balances the observed pressure gradient when uw is smaller than Uavg but underestimates the pressure gradient when uw is larger than Uavg (by a factor of 3–5 when uw 5 2Uavg), indicating the neglected waves enhance the bottom stress. In contrast, a bottom stress estimate that includes the waves [rCda(Uavg 1 U0)jUavg 1 U0j)] balances the observed pressure gradient independent of the relative size of uw and Uavg, indicating that this estimate accounts for the wave enhancement of the bottom stress. A parameterization proposed by Wright and Thompson provides a reasonable estimate of the total bottom stress (including the waves) given the burst-averaged current and the wave orbital velocity.
    Description: The Red Sea field program was supported by Awards USA 00002 and KSA 00011 made by KAUST. S. Lentz was supported for the analysis by NSF Award OCE-1558343.
    Description: 2019-01-13
    Keywords: Coastal flows ; Currents ; Dynamics ; Gravity waves ; Turbulence
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
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  • 9
    Publication Date: 2017-01-05
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2015. This article is posted here by permission of American Meteorological Society for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Climate 28 (2015): 5885–5907, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-14-00635.1.
    Description: The structure, variability, and regional connectivity of the Tokar Gap jet (TGJ) are described using WRF Model analyses and supporting atmospheric datasets from the East African–Red Sea–Arabian Peninsula (EARSAP) region during summer 2008. Sources of the TGJ’s unique quasi-diurnal nature and association with atypically high atmospheric moisture transport are traced back to larger-scale atmospheric dynamics influencing its forcing. These include seasonal shifts in the intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ), variability of the monsoon and North African wind regimes, and ties to other orographic flow patterns. Strong modulation of the TGJ by regional processes such as the desert heating cycle, wind convergence at the ITCZ surface front, and the local land–sea breeze cycle are described. Two case studies present the interplay of these influences in detail. The first of these was an “extreme” gap wind event on 12 July, in which horizontal velocities in the Tokar Gap exceeded 26 m s−1 and the flow from the jet extended the full width of the Red Sea basin. This event coincided with development of a large mesoscale convective complex (MCC) and precipitation at the entrance of the Tokar Gap as well as smaller gaps downstream along the Arabian Peninsula. More typical behavior of the TGJ during the 2008 summer is discussed using a second case study on 19 July. Downwind impact of the TGJ is evaluated using Lagrangian model trajectories and analysis of the lateral moisture fluxes (LMFs) during jet events. These results suggest means by which TGJ contributes to large LMFs and has potential bearing upon Sahelian rainfall and MCC development.
    Description: This work was supported by a grant from the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) as well as National Science Foundation Grant OCE0927017 and from DOD (MURI) Grant N000141110087, administered by the Office of Naval Research.
    Description: 2016-02-01
    Keywords: Africa ; Orographic effects ; Monsoons ; Atmosphere-land interaction ; Atmosphere-ocean interaction ; Hydrometeorology
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
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  • 10
    Publication Date: 2017-06-07
    Description: Author Posting. © American Meteorological Society, 2017. This article is posted here by permission of American Meteorological Society for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Physical Oceanography 47 (2017): 1061-1075, doi:10.1175/JPO-D-16-0248.1.
    Description: A major challenge in modeling the circulation over coral reefs is uncertainty in the drag coefficient because existing estimates span two orders of magnitude. Current and pressure measurements from five coral reefs are used to estimate drag coefficients based on depth-average flow, assuming a balance between the cross-reef pressure gradient and the bottom stress. At two sites wind stress is a significant term in the cross-reef momentum balance and is included in estimating the drag coefficient. For the five coral reef sites and a previous laboratory study, estimated drag coefficients increase as the water depth decreases consistent with open channel flow theory. For example, for a typical coral reef hydrodynamic roughness of 5 cm, observational estimates, and the theory indicate that the drag coefficient decreases from 0.4 in 20 cm of water to 0.005 in 10 m of water. Synthesis of results from the new field observations with estimates from previous field and laboratory studies indicate that coral reef drag coefficients range from 0.2 to 0.005 and hydrodynamic roughnesses generally range from 2 to 8 cm. While coral reef drag coefficients depend on factors such as physical roughness and surface waves, a substantial fraction of the scatter in estimates of coral reef drag coefficients is due to variations in water depth.
    Description: The Red Sea field program was supported by Awards USA 00002 and KSA 00011 made by KAUST to S. Lentz and J. Churchill. The Palau field program was funded by NSF Award OCE-1220529.
    Keywords: Ocean ; Currents ; Wind stress ; Boundary layer ; Sea level ; Tides
    Repository Name: Woods Hole Open Access Server
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