Characterization of cumulus cloud fields using trajectories in the center of gravity versus water mass phase space: 2. Aerosol effects on warm convective clouds

Reuven H. Heiblum, Orit Altaratz, Ilan Koren*, Graham Feingold, Alexander B. Kostinski, Alexander P. Khain, Mikhail Ovchinnikov, Erick Fredj, Guy Dagan, Lital Pinto, Ricki Yaish, Qian Chen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations

Abstract

In Part I of this work a 3-D cloud tracking algorithm and phase space of center of gravity altitude versus cloud liquid water mass (CvM space) were introduced and described in detail. We showed how new physical insight can be gained by following cloud trajectories in the CvM space. Here this approach is used to investigate aerosol effects on cloud fields of warm cumuli. We show a clear effect of the aerosol loading on the shape and size of CvM clusters. We also find fundamental differences in the CvM space between simulations using bin versus bulk microphysical schemes, with the bin scheme precipitation expressing much higher sensitivity to changes in aerosol concentrations. Using the bin microphysical scheme, we find that the increase in cloud center of gravity altitude with increase in aerosol concentrations occurs for a wide range of cloud sizes. This is attributed to reduced sedimentation, increased buoyancy and vertical velocities, and increased environmental instability, all of which are tightly coupled to inhibition of precipitation processes and subsequent feedbacks of clouds on their environment. Many of the physical processes shown here are consistent with processes typically associated with cloud invigoration.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)6356-6373
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research
Volume121
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.

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