Evaluation of a Turbulent Mixing Length Parameterization Applied to the Case of an Approaching Upper-Tropospheric Trough
Miller, Douglas K.
Walters, Donald L.
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The challenge of simulating a realistic evolution of optical turbulence in the stable, free atmosphere, even under the conditions of a strong jet-streak, by a state-of-the-art mesoscale model has been documented by Walters and Miller (1999). In the case presented, Walters and Miller (1999) showed that a modification of the shear and buoyancy contributions to the simulated turbulent kinetic energy (TKE) using a Mellor-Yamada 2.5 parameterization (Mellor and Yamada 1974, 1982; Yamada 1975) resulted in model predictions which had more realistic TKE magnitudes when compared to radar, balloon, and wind tunnel measurements. What has yet to be investigated is the sensitivity of the modified version of the Bougeault and Lacarrere (1989) mixing length parameterization to initial conditions and to model vertical and horizontal resolution. The sensitivity of simulated TKE will be the focus of this study under the conditions of low and moderate turbulence which occurred with the approach of a cut-off low pressure system on 18 April 2000 over Albuquerque, New Mexico. The numerical experiments generating the results for this study will be defined in Section 2, the synoptic conditions and actual integrated optical turbulence measurements for the 18 April case study will be presented in Section 3, preliminary model results will be given in Section 4, and a summary of the study will be made in Section 5.
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