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Development and analysis of prognostic equations for mesoscale kinetic energy and mesoscale (subgrid scale) fluxes for large-scale atmospheric modelsGenerated by landscape discontinuities (e.g., sea breezes) mesoscale circulation processes are not represented in large-scale atmospheric models (e.g., general circulation models), which have an inappropiate grid-scale resolution. With the assumption that atmospheric variables can be separated into large scale, mesoscale, and turbulent scale, a set of prognostic equations applicable in large-scale atmospheric models for momentum, temperature, moisture, and any other gaseous or aerosol material, which includes both mesoscale and turbulent fluxes is developed. Prognostic equations are also developed for these mesoscale fluxes, which indicate a closure problem and, therefore, require a parameterization. For this purpose, the mean mesoscale kinetic energy (MKE) per unit of mass is used, defined as E-tilde = 0.5 (the mean value of u'(sub i exp 2), where u'(sub i) represents the three Cartesian components of a mesoscale circulation (the angle bracket symbol is the grid-scale, horizontal averaging operator in the large-scale model, and a tilde indicates a corresponding large-scale mean value). A prognostic equation is developed for E-tilde, and an analysis of the different terms of this equation indicates that the mesoscale vertical heat flux, the mesoscale pressure correlation, and the interaction between turbulence and mesoscale perturbations are the major terms that affect the time tendency of E-tilde. A-state-of-the-art mesoscale atmospheric model is used to investigate the relationship between MKE, landscape discontinuities (as characterized by the spatial distribution of heat fluxes at the earth's surface), and mesoscale sensible and latent heat fluxes in the atmosphere. MKE is compared with turbulence kinetic energy to illustrate the importance of mesoscale processes as compared to turbulent processes. This analysis emphasizes the potential use of MKE to bridge between landscape discontinuities and mesoscale fluxes and, therefore, to parameterize mesoscale fluxes generated by such subgrid-scale landscape discontinuities in large-scale atmospheric models.
Document ID
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
Avissar, Roni (Rutgers Univ. New Brunswick, NJ, United States)
Chen, Fei (Rutgers Univ. New Brunswick, NJ, United States)
Date Acquired
August 16, 2013
Publication Date
November 15, 1993
Publication Information
Publication: Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences
Volume: 50
Issue: 22
ISSN: 0022-4928
Subject Category
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits